Access to the central website of the European Union, ‘Europa’, as well as European Commission staff access to email and other online working tools experienced outages on Thursday after a sustained cyber attack. The attack is thought to be a denial of service attack and affected various internet services used by the staff.
The European Commission confirmed that no data breach had occurred.
Following the attacks and disruption of services, the European Commission staff received a mass-distributed email informing them of the attack.
The email reads:
“This afternoon, the European Commission was subject to a cyberattack (denial of services) which resulted in the saturation of our Internet connection. This has had a negative impact on the external access to the Europa site and on the Internet access for staff. We are currently taking mitigating measures to restore normal services. Thank you for your understanding and patience.”
A denial-of-service attack is a cyber-attack where the perpetrator seeks to make a machine or network resource unavailable to its intended users by temporarily or indefinitely disrupting services of a host connected to the Internet. Denial of service is typically accomplished by flooding the targeted machine or resource with superfluous requests in an attempt to overload systems and prevent some or all legitimate requests from being fulfilled.
These kinds of attacks do not always target data and often serve as a means of disruption and political statement.
By Thursday night all services had been restored.