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Belgian government network taken offline following DDoS attack

DDoS
(Image credit: Image Credit: Profit_Image / Shutterstock)

The IT network operated by the Belgian government suffered a large-scale Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack earlier this week, knocking most of its websites and back-end offline.

Described by The Record as “massive”, the attack targeted Belnet, an ISP that gets its funding through the Belgian budget. It provides internet access for the Belgian government, educational institutions, ministries and such.

In total, more than 200 organizations have been impacted by the attack, including the government’s Covid-19 vaccine portal. Some services have been brought back online, but others, such as The Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Finance, remain offline.

With lockdown still in force throughout the country, most of the government’s meetings and sessions are usually done remotely, and have had to be postponed. Only the Finance and Foreign Relations committees were able to hold their meetings, it was said.

The official investigation is still ongoing and the government isn’t pointing any fingers just yet. However, some politicians have drawn the public’s attention to the fact that the Belgium Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee planned to hear testimony from a Uyghur survivor of Chinese forced labor camps. The testimony has since been postponed, The Register said.

China has been accused of mistreating the Uyghur minority in the country, with some going as far as to suggest China is guilty of genocide. The country has strongly denied any allegations of mistreatment.