Russian groups target Switzerland with multiple cyberattacks

Swiss armed forces and transport infrastructure were allegedly hit by a DDoS attack.

The pro-Russian hacker group “NoName” has claimed responsibility for the attacks on multiple websites of Switzerland's critical infrastructure, including the Armed Forces of Switzerland, Bern regional airport, Geneva International Airport, St. Grenchen, Gallen-Altenrhein, and Samedan airports, as well as airline companies Zimex Aviation and Heliswiss. The group posted the claims of the attacks on its Telegram channel on June 13th.

The websites were allegedly hit by a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, which aims to overload websites and applications with targeted requests so that they are no longer accessible. At the time of writing, the websites of the Armed Forces of Switzerland, Zimex, and Grenchen Airport were still down, while others were functioning as usual.

Earlier this week, the group carried out a malicious attack on Swiss federal government websites and the online portal of the Swiss Federal Railways. As reported on Swiss public radio, SRF, several websites of the federal administration were temporarily down.

The cybercriminals claim that their attacks are a response to Switzerland's support for Ukraine and EU sanctions against Russia.

NoName Telegram channel
NoName Telegram channel. Image by Cybernews

Targets for ransomware attack

DDoS attacks aren’t the only incursions impacting Switzerland — other forms of cyber threats also pose significant risks. At the beginning of June, a ransomware attack against the Bern-based IT company Xplain, which provides services to federal and cantonal departments, affected the Swiss Federal Railways and the Aargau cantonal authorities.

The hackers reportedly used malware to exploit a vulnerability on Xplain servers hosting applications for cantonal services to steal data. Reportedly, the attack was carried out by the Play group, which is believed to be based in Russia. The same group recently targeted the Swiss media companies CH Media and NZZ.

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