Sensitive data from federal politicians and the military might have been comprimised in an apparently successful hacking attack that targeted a Bundestag transport service, reports Bild am Sonntag.
Last week’s attack, confirmed to television channel ARD by a spokesperson for the Federal Ministry of Defence, was directed against the data center of BWFuhrparkService GmbH, which also runs the Bundestag transport service.
75.1 percent of the company is owned by the Federal Ministry of Defense, with Deutsche Bahn owning the remaining 24.9 per cent.
In 2019, members of the German federal parliament – the Bundestag - resorted to the company’s transport services on a total of 142,000 occasions, reports the publication.
On 14 August BWFuhrparkService GmbH informed parliament of the hacker attack.
Private residential addresses of members of the Bundestag might have been tapped by those behind the incident, as when a parliamentarian books transport services the passenger name, the time of the start of the journey, the destination and all optional requirements such as a child car seat are saved in the scheduling system.
The Bundestag administration wrote to inform the parliamentary groups about the incident, adding:
“Those behind the attack and its motives are not known.”
It is yet unclear whether this was the first incident involving a hacking attack on the data center, or whether data was manipulated or leaked.
In addition to its own IT forensic experts, who have been tasked with analyzing and repairing the damage, the vehicle fleet company has enlisted the services of HiSolutions AG, which works closely with the German armed forces.
The Federal Office for Information Security had also been informed of the attack.
“If a successful analysis does not succeed, the intention is to involve the Bundeswehr Cyber Security Center,” says a cited letter from the Bundestag administration.
Bundestag Vice President Thomas Oppermann (SPD) was quoted by Bild am Sonntag as saying:
“There is a serious security breach… The incident must be resolved quickly.”