Reports from Hanoi indicate that on Friday hackers infiltrated the internet site of Vietnam Airlines and the flight information screens at two major Airports. The hacker displayed messages that the sate-owned media said disregarded the Vietnam’s, and The Philippines’ claims over the South China Sea.
According to Vietnamese Civil Aviation Authority, the airports attacked had to cease electronic check-ins for some time after the hackers compromised their systems on Friday afternoon. The hack affected the Vietnam Airlines’ website too. Attempts to access the URL transferred users to “bad sites overseas”.
According to the state media, the messages displayed on the flight information related to the South China Sea. The messages denounced the claims of Vietnam and The Philippines over the sea. The two countries are at crossfire with Beijing over maritime rights of the sea. A hacktivists group identified as 1973CN claimed responsibility for the hack, according to Reuters. Reuters was not able to get the content of the messages.
The Far East region is at the brink of war over the South China Sea. On July 12, an arbitral court ruled against China’s claims to a large part of the sea. Beijing expressed its contempt for the ruling and has since refused to accept and recognize it.
The plaintiff, Manila, was happy about the decision. Hanoi also expressed its gratitude to the arbitral court for the ruling. Both Vietnam and The Philippines are strongly against the conduct of China’s massive coastguard fleet and its island constructions in the South China Sea.
Vietnamese vice minister for transport, Nguyen Nhat claimed that Vietnam and The Philippines take offense in the content that the Hackers displayed. The report by the vice minister failed to elaborate the message but confirmed similar messages posted on Vietnam Airlines’ website along with “distorting content” of the state of the South China Sea.