The websites of key German administrations, including companies and airports, have been targetted by cyberattacks, the Federal Cybersecurity Agency (BSI) said on Thursday.
The BSI has been informed of “DDoS attacks (by denial of service) currently in progress against targets in Germany”, said a spokesperson.
“Individual targets in the financial sector” and federal government sites were also attacked, with no major consequences at this stage.
Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks involve targetting a computer system by flooding it with messages or connection requests.
Russian hacker site Killnet has taken credit for the attack, according to the BSI. Handelsblatt media group reported that the attacks were a retaliation against Berlin approving the deployment of Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.
Clearly identifying where an attack like this comes from, however, is “particularly difficult for hacker collectives”, added the BSI spokesperson.
The hackers “make specific calls to action, and then lots of people participate” but “it’s hard to prove that authorship can be attributed to them,” he added.
“Some sites are currently unavailable,” the BSI spokesperson confirmed to AFP, after two Stuttgart daily newspapers mentioned blockages on Thursday morning.
“There is currently no indication of direct repercussions on the services concerned and, according to the assessment of the BSI, no repercussions should be expected if the usual protective measures are taken”.
The Baden-Württemberg regional police website was also targetted, according to the regional interior ministry.
The investigation has now been handed over to the police.
Germany has been targetted several times in recent years by cyberattacks that Russia has claimed, including one in 2015 that involved the Bundestag, the lower house of the German parliament, and the office of former Chancellor Angela Merkel.
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