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Winter Olympics opening ceremony hit by cyber attack


The Winter Olympics’ opening ceremony was hit with a cyber attack, officials for the PyeongChang games confirmed — but stopped short of blaming Russia for the breach.


The PyeongChang 2018 website wasn’t working before the Friday night games, making it impossible to access event tickets and crucial information.


WiFi at the games also stopped working before the official kickoff.


Order wasn’t fully restored to the system for 12 hours, at about 8 a.m. Saturday, the Guardian reported.

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“There was a cyber attack and the server was updated yesterday during the day and we have the cause of the problem,” Sung Baik-you, a spokesperson for the games, told the Guardian on Sunday.


“We are taking secure operations and, in line with best practice, we’re not going to comment on the issue because it is an issue that we are dealing with,” Sung continued.


The representative declined to say what nation or entity was behind the attack.


The games are considered a hot bed for hacking attempts because of the massive number of people attending, according to security experts.

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Representatives for the winter games on Saturday previously declined to call it a cyber attack.


Yonhap, South Korea’s news agency, previously reported servers were shuttered to prevent damage.


Russia is rumored to be behind the attack, with some believing it’s retribution for the nation getting banned from the Olympics over its Kremlin-backed doping ring.


Yet Russia claimed in the days leading up to the opening ceremony that it wasn’t planning a cyber attack.


“We know that Western media are planning pseudo-investigations on the theme of ‘Russian fingerprints’ in hacking attacks on information resources related to the hosting of the Winter Olympic Games in the Republic of Korea,” the nation’s foreign ministry warned.


“Of course, no evidence will be presented to the world.”


The strong statement came after cyber security experts warned the Kremlin could be mounting a retaliatory attack for more than 200 athletes getting banned.


International Olympic Committee spokesman Mark Adams indicated the body wasn’t aware of who was behind the attack.


“I certainly don’t know,” he said of a possible culprit. “But best international practice says that you don’t talk about an attack.


“It is one we are dealing with. We are making sure our systems are secure and they are secure.”

With News Wire Services

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