U.S. Airport Hit With Cyberattack Over Ukraine: 'No One Is Afraid of You'

The website of Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, was hit with a cyberattack Tuesday, according to the Connecticut Airport Authority (CAA) and the situational awareness update service CyberKnow.

A translated message left by the hackers said that "when the supply of weapons to Ukraine stops, attacks on the information structure of your country will instantly stop," CyberKnow reported. "America, no one is afraid of you," the message added. The CAA, which operates Bradley Airport, told Newsweek it was "actively monitoring an external attempt to crash the Bradley Airport website."

As of 1 p.m. ET, the website appeared to be operating normally. "The website is currently live and there is no data breach. The incident is isolated to the website only and there is no impact to airport operations," the CAA said in a statement.

It was not immediately clear why the Connecticut airport would have been targeted in an attack. CyberKnow said it was carried out by the Russian hacker group Killnet, although the CAA did not attribute the attack to a particular group in its statement. The FBI's director recently said he is concerned about possible Russian cyberattacks against critical U.S. infrastructure.

Bradley Airport Cyberattack
The website of the Bradley International Airport in Windsor Locks, Connecticut, was reportedly hit with a cyberattack Tuesday. Above, passengers line up to go through a security checkpoint at Bradley on August 12, 2006. Jessica Hill/AP Photo

The attack was identified as a distributed denial of service. This is when users can't access information systems, devices and other network resources because of "the actions of a malicious cyber threat actor," according to an explanation on the U.S. Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency's website.

This is not the first time Killnet has reportedly used a hack to send a message in connection with the Russia-Ukraine war in recent weeks. After the hacker group Anonymous carried out several of its own cyberattacks against Russian sites and services in response to the Ukrainian invasion, Killnet said it had disrupted Anonymous' servers in retaliation, U.K. newspaper Metro reported.

Anonymous recently said it was able to disrupt some Russian media sites and even "shut down" Russia's space agency, Roscosmos. But that agency's director general, Dmitry Olegovich Rogozin, denied the claim, according to an earlier report published by Metro.

Metro also reported that Killnet posted a Russian-language video message earlier this month that appeared to address the claims by Anonymous. In the video message, a hooded figure dressed in dark clothing with a distorted voice is shown while the audio plays.

"Greetings, Russians and friendly union nations. The internet is full of fake information about the hacking of Russian banks, hacks on Russian media servers, and much more," the figure said, according to a translation from Metro. "None of this poses any danger to people. This 'information bomb' is merely text and nothing more. Do not fall for fake information on the internet. Have no doubts about your country."

The same hooded figure was shown in a picture posted Tuesday by CyberKnow along with the report on the Bradley Airport cyberattack. But the figure was in front of a different backdrop with the words "Hello USA."

Update 03/29/22, 1:20 p.m. ET: This story was updated with additional information and background.

Correction 04/04/22, 4:15 p.m. An earlier version of this story misattributed a quote from the Connecticut Airport Authority when it said that the Bradley Airport website was live at 1 p.m. on March 29 and that there was no data breach. The CAA added that the incident was isolated to the website and that there was no impact on the airport's operations.