Swissport, largest airport services companies in the world, it’s cargo services division was the target of a ransomware attack.
The situation could be worse than management has indicated. The company’s website was inaccessible Friday. Visitors to the site receive a blank page with the following message: Back-end server is faulty or not available. It contained the effect by isolating servers to avoid the further spread of the problem and restoring systems by switching to unaffected cloud servers.
It said it has implemented backup processes and resources to maintain smooth operations. One of those measures is the use of paper manifests. Swissport said it is providing paper manifests at its Brussels Airport station. It is unclear whether manual processes are also required at other airports.
“Despite these efforts your performance may be impacted and not reach the levels you are used to,” Swissport told its airline customers and freight forwarders that rely on the company to process inbound and outbound shipments tendered to airlines.
Airlines hire companies like Swissport to handle baggage and cargo, refuel aircraft, staff passenger gates and provide other services.
Prior to the pandemic, Swissport processed about 224 million passengers and 4.5 million tons of cargo per year at nearly 300 airports. It had more than 60,000 employees. It operates about 120 cargo warehouses.
The company’s revenues substantially dried up when the COVID pandemic shut down passenger travel and airlines canceled, or scaled back, contracts.