Pro-Russian group Killnet hit numerous European hospitals, including the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) in the Netherlands, with massive DDoS attacks, crashing their websites.
Killnet made its name in recent years by attacking online resources in countries that supported Ukraine’s defense against the Russian invasion. They started small by hitting websites belonging to various authorities, but eventually worked their way up by targeting airports and even the US Treasury.
Their efforts have been mainly for show because disrupting the websites of an institution or company is not the same as disrupting its operations. The group, though, continues to attack as it seeks to make a statement.
“European hospitals including in the Netherlands have most likely been hit by the pro-Russian hacking group Killnet,” said the Dutch National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), according to Euronews. “This group announced DDoS attacks on among other things, hospitals (in countries) helping Ukraine in its war against Russia.”
The declarative reason Killnet is targeting these hospitals is that their countries supported the Ukrainian army by treating wounded soldiers. In fact, a week ago, the same group attacked several German airports because their country decided to send tanks to Ukraine.
DDoS attacks usually have a single purpose: flood the target with meaningless traffic so that other people can’t access the website. It can also be used to cover up an intrusion, but that hasn’t been the case so far.
Killnet made its debut in March 2022, right after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, hitting targets in Europe and the US at regular intervals or after national declarations of support for Ukraine. Although they haven’t been a significant nuisance until now, intelligence agencies have warned of possible DDoS attacks against critical infrastructure, not just websites.