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Thu Jan 10, 2019, 02:42 PM

America's Electric Grid Has a Vulnerable Back Door--and Russia Walked Through It

Source: Wall Street Journal

The cyberattack on the 15-person company near Salem, Ore., which works with utilities and government agencies, was an early thrust in the worst known hack by a foreign government into the nation’s electric grid. It set off so many alarms that U.S. officials took the unusual step in early 2018 of publicly blaming the Russian government.

A reconstruction of the hack reveals a glaring vulnerability at the heart of the country’s electric system. Rather than strike the utilities head on, the hackers went after the system’s unprotected underbelly—hundreds of contractors and subcontractors like All-Ways who had no reason to be on high alert against foreign agents. From these tiny footholds, the hackers worked their way up the supply chain. Some experts believe two dozen or more utilities ultimately were breached.

The scheme’s success came less from its technical prowess—though the attackers did use some clever tactics—than in how it exploited trusted business relationships using impersonation and trickery.

The hackers planted malware on sites of online publications frequently read by utility engineers. They sent out fake résumés with tainted attachments, pretending to be job seekers. Once they had computer-network credentials, they slipped through hidden portals used by utility technicians, in some cases getting into computer systems that monitor and control electricity flows.

Read more: https://www.wsj.com/articles/americas-electric-grid-has-a-vulnerable-back-doorand-russia-walked-through-it-11547137112?mod=searchresults&page=1&pos=1



A new and sobering story about things being learned in a major ongoing story.

Our seemingly-endless hunger for fast and easy internet-based communications, information exchange, entertainment, software-as-a-service, data storage, etc., is leaving us vulnerable to some pretty worrisome stuff.

attentively,
Bright

10 replies, 2267 views

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Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 02:47 PM

1. Instead of a stupid wallwe should be fixing and upgrading our electrical grid against cyber attacks

But that’s not an exciting talking point for the orange maggot.

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Response to kimbutgar (Reply #1)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:10 PM

5. +1

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 02:49 PM

2. He never does anything above a fifth-grade level.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 02:53 PM

3. AFAIR this how the Target breach happened. Too easy.

AFAIR: As Far As I Remember.

I believe Target shared a network with an electrical supplier which gave entry to the scumbag wares. Same as any foreign gov't or other crackers. Find the most vulnerable contacts and use them to slowly build a picture of the network and additional vulnerabilities.

Inside jobs are the hardest to protect against. Just like some imaginary wall that can't protect us against the viruses living within, the repuglicons and plutos.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:07 PM

4. this is why feel that systems like this should be totaly standalone.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:15 PM

6. We were warned. I know that, of the politicians, Obama and Biden got it.

Anyone with half a brain who thought about where our vulnerabilities are, got it.

But nooooo, the greatest country on Earth allowed a bunch of yahoos to elect a yahoo president enabled by a yahoo political party in power. Our greatness may have hit the proverbial brick wall, never mind the concrete-steel slat-shower curtain wall.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:32 PM

7. Companies are too cheap to pay for good cybersecurity

They need to hire good programmers who can setup secure networks in their businesses - especially in the essential services like power utilities. Yep, that costs money but even more than that it, takes top managers with the intelligence and leadership to understand how important our security is.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:40 PM

8. By Rebecca Smith and Rob Barry

By Rebecca Smith and Rob Barry
Jan. 10, 2019 11:18 a.m. ET

https://twitter.com/SmithRebecca (but she hasn't posted there since 2016)
rebecca.smith@wsj.com

https://twitter.com/rob_barry
Rob.Barry@wsj.com

Links to previous articles by Rebecca Smith:

Last July:

DHS: Russian hackers got into control rooms of US utilities

I just finished posting this in the Economy Forum, and I thought it deserved to be in LBN.

Two years ago:

Coverup at French Nuclear Supplier Sparks Global Review

Five years ago:

Assault on California Power Station Raises Alarm on Potential for Terrorism

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 03:41 PM

9. Why isn't reporters and the media hounding him about it, and what he's done to prevent it.

And not let him lie and excuse his way out of answering the question.

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Response to TygrBright (Original post)

Thu Jan 10, 2019, 05:36 PM

10. This is how real cyber war will be fought.

Bring down power and communications, create chaos. After using social media to soften us up by splitting us into multiple smaller groups that view each other with deep suspicion, no longer trust the media, and hate the government.

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