Organizers looking into ‘possible attack’ on internet, Wi-Fi

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) Pyeongchang Olympic organizers are investigating a possible attack on their internet and Wi-Fi systems that took place about 45 minutes before the opening ceremony.

Organizing committee spokeswoman Nancy Park said the defense ministry and a cybersecurity team were investigating the outage that occurred Friday night.

”It didn’t affect the opening ceremony,” Park said. ”It went as planned. We just had some issue with our internal systems, but we are working to normalize that.”

She said the systems were almost back to normal about 15 hours after the problems were discovered.

South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported that servers were shut down to prevent damage to technical systems, causing problems with the Pyeongchang Olympic website.

Park declined to call it a cyberattack and said she didn’t want to speak in detail since organizers were still trying to identify the cause.

”We don’t want to speculate right now,” she said. ”It’s not good to guess.”

She said the outage affected only ”non-core” systems and had no impact on ”the actual events” during Saturday’s first full day of competition.

Organizers suggested technical problems might have been caused by the mountainous region in which the Olympics are based.

Security experts have cautioned that large events like the Olympics are targets for hacking, even in a country like South Korea, which produces some of the world’s most sophisticated technology.

More AP Olympic coverage: https://wintergames.ap.org

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