A massive DDoS knocked offline Belgian government websites

A massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack shut down Belgiums’ government websites, internal networks were also impacted.

A massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack hit most of the Belgium government’s IT network, according to the media the attack also knocked offline internal systems.

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People attempting to visit websites hosted on the Belnet network were not able to reach them and were displayed error messages. The websites of the Belgium government and police services were also unavailable.

Belnet (or the Belgian National research and education network) is a Belgian internet provider for educational institutions, research centres, scientific institutes and government services. BELNET provides web services to higher education, federal departments and ministries, and international organisations.

“Due to a DDoS-attack some Belnet customers are experiencing connectivity problems. Our teams are working hard to mitigate the attacks and to restore connectivity. Belnet customers can contact our Service Desk at 02 790 33 00. We apologize for the inconvenience.” reads the status page published by Belnet.

Around 7.30 PM CET time, Belnet announced that its teams have successfully implemented several mitigation rules and that the effect of the attack were diminishing.

The Belgium Justice Department confirmed the unavailability of its online services through on Twitter.

TheRecord website reported that also Belgium’s COVID-19 vaccine reservation portal, which was hosted on Belnet, has been down for the entire day due to the DDoS attack.

Authorities are investigating the case, but at this time Belgium authorities did not attribute the DDoS attack to any specific threat actor.

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Pierluigi Paganini

(SecurityAffairs – hacking, DDoS)

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