Holidaymakers were forced to read departure times off whiteboards around the airport due to the technical issues.
The airport said that they were forced to take systems offline to try and keep the attack contained.
Spokesman James Gore said: “We believe there was an online attempt to target part of our administrative systems and that required us to take a number of applications offline as a precautionary measure, including the one that provides our data for flight information screens.
“That was done to contain the problem and avoid any further impact on more critical systems.”
Mr Gore said that it was a “speculative” attempt rather than a targeted attack on Bristol Airport.
Some airport users defended the staff at the airport, Robert Baker tweeted: “We should praise the staff for how they’re dealing with it”.
However, others were left concerned, Twitter user Andy Buckingham said: “The fact that @BristolAirport’s flight information screens could even be taken down by ransomware is crazy.
“It’s good to be transparent about what happened, but if it’s for sympathy it’s the wrong approach.
“Why were the systems run in a way it could happen in the first place?”
Mr Gore added: “Established contingency plans were implemented to keep passengers informed about flight information.
“Flight operations remained unaffected.
“Bristol Airport always remains vigilant against all types of hostile online activity.
“As with every event of any type we will monitor and keep under review how to avoid it re-occurring.
“However, it is important to recognise that security measures already in place ensured minimum disruption to passenger journeys.”
The hacking did not cause any flight to be disrupted.
The airport is carrying out an investigation to find out what happened and has said that no ransom was paid to get the systems working again.
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