Last Sunday the systems of a group of hospitals in Paris were hit by a DDoS attack. This temporarily prevented employees from accessing the home work programs and their email.
The cyber-attack targeted the hospital group Assistance Publique-Hôpitaux de Paris (APHP). This group includes 44 hospitals in and around Paris. These hospitals are currently extremely busy taking care of a large number of corona patients. There are currently 665 corona patients in intensive care throughout Paris. With the corona crisis already overwhelming the medical professionals, attacks like this one can do more damage than usual.
Cyber-attacks during the Corona crisis
Cyber criminals seem eager to take advantage of the current crisis. On a small scale, people fall victim to phishing. The criminals profit off of the fear the current crisis causes. But cyber criminals also target large organizations. Many people work from home, which means that the consequences of shutting down systems are much greater. A DDoS attack now has even more consequences. Furthermore, you can imagine that in times like these, people will pay quicker when they fall victim to a ransomware attack.
What is a DDoS attack?
In a DDoS attack, the servers of a website or system are overloaded with requests. Hackers do this by requesting a website with a large amount of devices at the same time. Because the website is not built for such an amount of visitors, it slows down or is temporarily unavailable. Hackers often carry out DDoS attacks with a so-called botnet. A botnet is a network of infected devices that the hacker can control.