Indian low-cost carrier SpiceJet has been facing significant disruption following a ransomware attack that hit the airline’s systems yesterday. While the operator claimed to have brought the situation under control, its operations today have also been impacted by the disruption. Let’s take a look at the nature of the situation.
A significant attack
As reported by the BBC, SpiceJet first became aware of the ransomware attack yesterday evening. According to Imperva, such attacks typically result in data and files being locked and encrypted by those carrying it out. After this, as the name suggests, the files and data can only be freed following payment to the attacker.
While SpiceJet now claims to have got the situation under control, this was not before its operations were significantly impacted by the attack. With the departure process for many flights slowing down as a result, passengers took to social media to vent their frustrations at the lack of communication and assistance provided by the airline. SpiceJet tweeted the following statement this morning:
“Certain SpiceJet systems faced an attempted ransomware attack last night that impacted and slowed down morning flight departures today. Our IT team has contained and rectified the situation and flights are operating normally now.”
Almost 150 SpiceJet flights were delayed yesterday. Photo: Getty Images
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The extent of the delays
But just how badly has the ransomware attack hit Spicejet’s operations. Looking at data provided by FlightAware, we can see that, yesterday, cancelations to services were minimal. Indeed, the figure in this regard was reportedly as low as six flights, or 1% of the schedule. However, delays were more widespread.
Indeed, FlightAware’s data shows that more than a third of SpiceJet’s departures were delayed yesterday, likely due to the ransomware attack. The total figure amounted to 147 flights, or 34% of yesterday’s scheduled services.
With the attack having reportedly now been contained, today’s figures make for better reading. Thus far, FlightAware reports that just two SpiceJet flights have been canceled today, with a further eight having been delayed. However, these figures may well rise if there is a backlog of disruption following the attack.
SpiceJet has had a difficult few weeks. Photo: Boeing
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Other recent disruption
The ransomware attack is one of several difficulties that SpiceJet has had to overcome in recent times. Indeed, just last week, the airline’s flights from Delhi faced delays after air traffic controllers refused to let them depart. The reason for this was that SpiceJet had refrained from making its daily airport usage payment.
Earlier this month, SpiceJet also hit the headlines when several passengers on a Boeing 737 from Mumbai to Durgapur were injured during a bout of turbulence. The airline was later placed under investigation, with details later emerging that showed that the aircraft involved flew through a storm that others were avoiding. SpiceJet will hope to bounce back from these challenges with a recovery this summer.
What do you make of the ransomware attack on SpiceJet? Have you been delayed as a result? Let us know your thoughts and experiences in the comments!
Sources: BBC, FlightAware, Imperva
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