Orange Spain’s Traffic Plunges as Hackers Hijack Network

Orange Spains Traffic Plunges as Hackers Hijack Network


In a recent incident that has sent shockwaves through the telecommunications industry, Orange Spain, one of the country’s leading providers, suffered a significant decrease in traffic due to a malicious BGP hijack. This attack resulted in a near 50% drop in traffic from Orange Spain customers, severely impacting the availability of services.

Cloudflare Radar, a reputable internet monitoring service, reported this alarming decline in traffic, raising concerns about the security of networks and the potential vulnerability of other organizations.

The hijack was made possible by the unauthorized access gained to Orange’s RIPE account, which manages internet IP addresses. The lax security measures at RIPE, including the absence of two-step authentication and a lenient password policy, allowed the threat actor to exploit vulnerabilities and disrupt BGP routing.

Disturbingly, credentials to access RIPE are being openly sold on infostealer marketplaces, highlighting the urgent need for stronger security measures within the telecommunications industry.

As we consider this incident, it becomes evident that the implications reach far beyond Orange Spain, serving as a sobering reminder of the ongoing battle against cyber threats.

Key Takeaways

  • Orange Spain experienced a significant traffic drop of nearly 50% due to a BGP hijack.
  • The hijack was caused by a threat actor gaining access to Orange’s RIPE account and announcing config that broke BGP routing.
  • Weak security measures at RIPE, including the lack of two-step authentication and a strong password policy, contributed to the hijack.
  • The availability of credentials on infostealer marketplaces poses a significant threat to other organizations and ISPs, highlighting the need for stronger security measures in the telecommunications industry.

Orange Spain’s Outage and Traffic Drop

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During a recent incident, Orange Spain experienced a significant outage and a nearly 50% drop in traffic, which was caused by a BGP hijack. The outage resulted in a severe impact on service availability for Orange Spain users. Cloudflare Radar reported the substantial decrease in traffic, highlighting the severity of the incident.

The BGP hijack occurred when a threat actor gained access to Orange’s RIPE account, responsible for managing internet IP addresses. Using this account, the threat actor announced a configuration that disrupted BGP routing, which is crucial for directing network calls.

The compromised account had been used for information stealing since August, underscoring weak security measures at RIPE. This incident emphasizes the need for stronger security measures in the telecommunications industry to mitigate similar attacks in the future.

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How the Hijack Happened

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The BGP hijack that resulted in Orange Spain’s outage and traffic drop occurred when a threat actor gained unauthorized access to Orange’s RIPE account. RIPE, responsible for managing internet IP addresses, was used by the threat actor to announce a configuration that disrupted BGP routing.

BGP routing plays a crucial role in directing network calls. The threat actor even posted a screenshot of their logged-in account on social media, showcasing their unauthorized access.

Weak security measures at RIPE contributed to the incident, as two-step authentication was disabled for the account, and there is no strong password policy in place. This compromised account had been used for information stealing since August. The availability of credentials to access RIPE on infostealer marketplaces poses a significant threat to other organizations and ISPs.

Weak Security Measures at RIPE

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Insufficient security measures at RIPE have contributed to the vulnerability of organizations and Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to hijacking attacks. The lack of two-step authentication for RIPE accounts and the absence of a strong password policy have made it easier for threat actors to gain unauthorized access.

The compromised RIPE account used in the Orange Spain incident had been active for several months, highlighting the potential for information stealing and malicious activities. Additionally, the availability of credentials on infostealer marketplaces poses a significant threat, as these credentials enable similar hijacking attacks on other organizations and ISPs.

The weak security measures at RIPE not only put individual organizations at risk but also create a broader vulnerability across Europe’s telecommunications industry. It is crucial for RIPE to implement stronger security measures to mitigate the risks posed by such attacks.

Selling Credentials on Infostealer Marketplaces

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The availability of stolen credentials on infostealer marketplaces exacerbates the vulnerability of organizations and Internet Service Providers (ISPs), amplifying the risks of hijacking attacks. These marketplaces provide a platform for threat actors to sell credentials that grant access to crucial systems, such as RIPE, the organization responsible for managing internet IP addresses.

With thousands of credentials available, the weak security measures at RIPE contribute to the ease with which these credentials can be obtained. This poses a significant threat not only to Orange Spain but also to other organizations and ISPs across Europe.

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The incident highlights the urgent need for stronger security measures in the telecommunications industry to prevent such attacks and safeguard the integrity of network infrastructure.

Orange Spain’s Response

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Orange Spain promptly addressed the BGP hijacking incident, ensuring a swift restoration of service and the reconnection of their customers. The company quickly reverted the changes made by the threat actor and successfully restored service, getting customers back online.

Orange Spain demonstrated transparency in addressing the issue, acknowledging the potential vulnerability of other organizations. This incident highlights the need for stronger security measures in the telecommunications industry.

It is crucial for companies like Orange Spain to implement robust authentication protocols, such as two-step authentication, to prevent unauthorized access to critical accounts. Additionally, organizations should regularly review and update their password policies to enforce stronger passwords and protect against credential theft.

The quick response and resolution by Orange Spain serve as an example for other companies to prioritize cybersecurity and protect their networks from similar attacks.

The Potential Vulnerability of Other Organizations

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With the recent BGP hijacking incident at Orange Spain serving as a stark reminder of the potential vulnerabilities within the telecommunications industry, it is crucial to assess the susceptibility of other organizations to similar attacks. The incident highlighted the ease with which threat actors could gain access to key accounts and manipulate routing configurations, leading to significant disruptions in service availability.

Given the weak security measures at RIPE, the organization responsible for managing internet IP addresses, credentials to access the system are being sold on infostealer marketplaces. This availability of thousands of credentials poses a significant threat to organizations and ISPs across Europe.

Therefore, it is imperative for these entities to strengthen their security measures, implement two-step authentication, and enforce strong password policies to mitigate the risk of BGP hijacking and safeguard their networks from malicious actors.

The Need for Stronger Security Measures

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To effectively address the vulnerabilities exposed by the recent BGP hijacking incident, a comprehensive implementation of stronger security measures is imperative in the telecommunications industry. The Orange Spain incident highlights the urgent need for organizations to prioritize cybersecurity and protect their networks from malicious activities.

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One crucial aspect that needs attention is the implementation of robust authentication protocols, such as two-step authentication, to prevent unauthorized access to critical accounts. Additionally, organizations must enforce strong password policies to deter hackers from easily guessing passwords or using weak credentials obtained from infostealer marketplaces. Regular security audits and updates should also be conducted to identify and patch any potential vulnerabilities in network infrastructure.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Did the BGP Hijack Affect Service Availability for Orange Spain Users?

The BGP hijack significantly impacted service availability for Orange Spain users, resulting in a near 50% drop in traffic. Orange Spain quickly addressed the issue and restored service, highlighting the need for stronger security measures in the telecommunications industry.

What Is the Role of RIPE in Managing Internet IP Addresses?

RIPE (Réseaux IP Européens) is responsible for managing internet IP addresses. It plays a crucial role in allocating and distributing IP addresses to organizations and ISPs. Its weak security measures, such as the lack of two-step authentication, have contributed to recent hijacking attacks.

What Measures Did the Threat Actor Take to Gain Access to Orange’s RIPE Account?

The threat actor gained access to Orange’s RIPE account, which is responsible for managing internet IP addresses. They used the account to announce config that broke BGP routing, compromising service availability for Orange Spain users.

How Long Had the Compromised Account Been Used for Info Stealing Before the BGP Hijack Incident?

The compromised account had been used for info stealing since August, before the BGP hijack incident. This highlights the urgent need for stronger security measures at RIPE to prevent similar attacks on organizations and ISPs.

What Actions Did Orange Spain Take to Quickly Restore Service and Get Customers Back Online?

Orange Spain quickly responded to the hijack incident by reverting the changes made by the threat actor. They successfully restored service and got customers back online. The company demonstrated transparency and acknowledged the potential vulnerability of other organizations.

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