Hobart Airport website down after pro-IS hack

Hobart Airport's website remains out of operation following an online attack early on Sunday morning that saw it defaced with pro-Islamic State messages.
Written by Leon Spencer, Contributor

Hobart Airport's website remains disabled after it was hacked and defaced with a message supporting radical group Islamic State (IS) over the weekend.

While the message, which was posted on the site at around 3.30am AEST on Sunday, has been removed as the airport reviews its website security protocols, it has been replaced with a statement that the website is not operational.

"We're sorry, the Hobart Airport website is not currently operating," said the message. "We are working to get it back up and running as soon as possible. To check flight times, please visit the relevant airline website. We apologise for any inconvenience."

Tasmania Police, which was notified of the incident at 5.30am AEST on Sunday, has said that messages identical to the one that appeared on the site have been posted on thousands of websites worldwide since late 2014.

"The group claiming responsibility for the hacking appear to non-discriminately target organisations who use web hosts such as the one used by Hobart International Airport," a police statement said.

The statement, published late on Sunday evening, said that a police investigation is under way, and that the Hobart Airport website had been taken offline by airport management while investigations continue.

"There were no threats made towards the Hobart Airport or flight operations to and from the airport," the police statement said. "We are committed to supporting the security arrangements at the airport, and are prepared to provide an appropriate response."

Tasmania Police said it has been monitoring activity at the airport premises, and that there has been no suggestion of targeted activities on-site.

The incident comes just days after France's TV5Monde was struck by an "unprecedented" attack, supposedly in retribution for France's support of anti-IS military action.

The attack, which knocked out its IT systems and broadcasting equipment, saw the hackers post messages in support of IS as well as documents purporting to reveal the identities of relatives of French soldiers involved in anti-IS operations, according to Agence France-Presse.

"The attack affected all our 11 channels, nine general and two specialist, which went dark," TV5Monde's managing director Yves Bigot said in a video posted to its Facebook account on April 9.

With AAP

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