An American travel booking site for federal agencies has been hacked to install malicious software.
Govtrip.com handles travel reservations for at least a dozen US government agencies and was infected with a virus that tried to install malicious software when users visited the site.
A number of agencies, including the departments of Agriculture, Energy, Health & Human Services, Interior, Transportation, and Treasury, use the site exclusively to book travel arrangements, and blocked access following the attack.
Govtrip.com is also used to reimburse workers via direct deposit, which means that many federal employees' account information is also stored there.
After a reported attack on the 11th February, the Federal Aviation Administration began urging employees to avoid visiting the site on 12th February.
On Tuesday 17th February, the Department of Transportation sent an agency-wide email to employees warning them to steer clear of Govtrip.com. It stated: “The Department has identified a security issue with the use of GovTrip. The GovTrip system has been blocked from inside the DOT network.
“Employees should not access GovTrip from any DOT/FHWA PC while at work and we strongly suggest employees refrain from any attempts to access GovTrip using a home system or government-issued laptop as this could cause the PC to be infected with a virus that may not be detected by your anti-virus software. This safeguard will be in effect until further notice. Once this issue is resolved, all employees will be notified when to resume use of the GovTrip system.”