Several Chambers of Crafts in Germany are grappling with website and online service outages resulting from a “security incident” that affected a managed service provider’s data center. The cyberattack prompted the affected chambers to take their systems offline, severing network connections. Although the chambers’ websites state their unavailability due to a “system failure,” alternative communication channels such as telephone and email remain open, and on-site visits are still permitted. The parent organization acknowledges ongoing efforts to evaluate and address the incident but cautions that a potential data leak cannot be discounted.
The disruption affects 16 Chambers of Crafts in Germany, which serve as essential trade associations and guilds, with mandatory membership for workers in craft trades spanning carpentry, plumbing, baking, and butchery. These chambers play a crucial role in regulating vocational training and advocating for the craft industry’s interests. Despite the cyber incident, scheduled exams, further training courses, and inter-company apprentice training (ÜLU) are expected to proceed, according to Axel Fuhrmann, the general manager of the Düsseldorf Chamber of Crafts. However, individuals enrolled in courses currently lack access to resources on the chambers’ websites, and there is uncertainty regarding when unrestricted access will be restored.
The “security incident” unfolded during the first week of January, impacting an unidentified IT service provider’s data center, as stated by the parent organization’s online statement. The severity of the disruption is underscored by the ongoing inability to predict when the affected chambers will regain unrestricted access to their websites and online services. This cyber incident highlights the vulnerabilities faced by critical trade associations and emphasizes the urgency of cybersecurity measures to safeguard essential services and sensitive information.