Cyber attack
A global cyber attack appears to have hit number of businesses and government operations across the Ukraine, Russia, Britain and Denmark. abinandhan/Pixabay

The Ukrainian government reportedly has been hit by a massive cyberattack that has affected a number of businesses and utilities throughout the country, and may be responsible for a number of outages globally.

Reports indicate the airport in the country’s capital city of Kiev was caught in the attack, forcing some flights to stay grounded. "In connection with the irregular situation, some flight delays are possible," Boryspyl Airport Director Yevhen Dykhne said in a post on Facebook.

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In addition to the airport, the Ukrainian state-run aircraft manufacturer Antonov has also been forced to shut down some of its operation due to the attack. Reports on social media suggest gas stations across the country also have been paralyzed.

The National Bank of Ukraine issued a warning to its branches about “an external hacker attack on the websites of some Ukrainian banks.” It’s unclear to what extent banks in the country have been affected, but the central bank noted client services and daily banking operations have been slowed or stopped due to the attack.

“The information systems and cyberdefense team of the presidential administration operates in the normal mode, but with a high level of attention to the situation that occurs in other state because of the cyberattack,” Dmytro Shymkiv, the deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential administration, said in a statement.

While multiple systems in Ukraine appear to have been hit by the cyberattack, reports of impact throughout other parts of Europe suggests the effects could be part of a larger campaign.

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Maersk, a transport and logistics company in Denmark, released a statement via Twitter that noted its systems are down across "multiple sites and business units." The company said it believes the outages are due to a cyberattack.

In Russia, oil company Rosneft claimed its servers were slammed by a “powerful” cyberattack. The company said it “hopes” the incident isn’t connected to its ongoing court battle with another Russian conglomerate Sistema.

Rosneft said the attack could have “serious consequences,” but the company has moved its operations to a reserve production processing system, and neither oil output nor refining have been stopped as a result of the attack.

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Russian metals giant Evraz said its computer systems also were affected, the Russian news agency RIA reported.

WPP, a British advertising agency, reported it was also the victim of a cyberattack. The company, which is the largest advertising firm in the world, has not released any additional details.

It is unclear if all the outages are related. Last month, hundreds of thousands of computer systems across more than 150 countries were hit by a widespread ransomware attack known as WannaCry. That attack held hostage the infected machines and demanded a ransom be paid for the victims to regain access.

That attack was the result of a stolen exploit first developed by the U.S. National Security Agency and published online by a hacking collective known as the Shadow Brokers. Additional NSA exploits were also published and potentially could be used to carry out a similar attack.