Organizers for the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics are now investigating a possible cyberattack into their virtual systems, according to Reuters.
South Korean media initially stated that the technical disruptions were caused by this but later an Olympic spokesman, Sung Baik-you, said there’s no evidence of that.
“There were some issues that affected some of our non-critical systems last night for a few hours,” said Sung, according to Reuters, before adding that authorities are working to figure out what exactly happened.
“Experts are watching to ensure and maintain any systems at expected service levels. We are currently investigating the cause of the issue. At this time we cannot confirm (a cyberattack),” he said.
Those in operations of the ceremony, however, were worried that there could be a failure in the launch drones due to this “ambiguous” system difficulty. These UAVs were a large part of the ceremony with it specifically being available only for television viewers.
“Due to impromptu logistical changes it (drone deployment) did not proceed,” an International Olympic Committee spokesman said in elaborating further.
The Winter games are barely 50 miles from the North Korean border where the two countries are still technically at war (since 1953) with South Korea hoping that the games could potentially “break the ice” and bring North Korea to the table in talks.
“The Olympics involve so many countries, and so many sports, many of which have their own infrastructure, that it has become a rich target environment for many adversaries,” John Hultquist, a director at the cyber security firm FireEye, said in The Times.
Nevertheless, the attack did not disrupt the event or jeopardize the safety of the athletes or other attendees. A cybersecurity team was reportedly assisting with the investigation.
The website normalized Saturday morning, Yonghap reported. Olympic committee organizers said the origins of the attack remained unknown.