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Security IT

Smart-Grid Control Software Maker Hacked 96

Posted by timothy
from the 21-scadoo dept.
tsu doh nimh writes "Telvent, a multinational company whose software and services are used to remotely administer and monitor large sections of the energy and gas industries, began warning customers last week that it is investigating a sophisticated hacker attack spanning its operations in the United States, Canada and Spain. Brian Krebs reports that the attacker(s) installed malicious software and stole project files related to one of Telvent's core offerings — OASyS SCADA — a product that helps energy firms mesh older IT assets with more advanced 'smart grid' technologies. A follow-up story from Wired.com got confirmation from Telvent, and includes speculation from experts that the 'project files' could be used to sabotage systems. 'Some project files contain the "recipe" for the operations of a customer, describing calculations and frequencies at which systems run or when they should be turned on or off. If you're going to do a sophisticated attack, you get the project file and study it and decide how you want to modify the pieces of the operation. Then you modify the project file and load it, and they're not running what they think they're running.'"
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Smart-Grid Control Software Maker Hacked

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  • by Spy Handler (822350) on Thursday September 27, 2012 @06:13PM (#41483169) Homepage Journal

    Yes because computerizing stuff increases efficiency. Look under the hood of your car, all those chips and sensors are helping your engine make a lot more horsepower for the same amount of fuel than engines from 30 years ago. (Or, same amount of power for less fuel consumption)

    What we should really be asking is, does everything need to connect to the internet? And is enabling USB ports on critical systems so that workers can bring infected USB stick from home to bridge an air gap a good idea?

  • by localman57 (1340533) on Thursday September 27, 2012 @06:20PM (#41483227)

    The attackers will produce a cascading failure in the electrical grid that brings down the entire North American power grid.

    Frankly, I'm surprised we haven't had this happen already. It always blows my mind when there's some massive cascading power failure across mulitple states, and people are somehow relieved that it wasn't terrorism. Just a normal failure. How the fuck is a system that just collapses all by itself better than one that has to be pushed to collapse?

    It seems to me that instead of fucking around with underware bombs and shit, our enemies might get a lot better cost return with some iron spikes, aluminum wire, and some helium filled weather balloons. Giant transmission lines in the middle of the desert are virtually impossible to defend, and are already stressed to the breaking point when it's hot across the nation. All they need is a little push...no complicated cyber-hacker-shit required.

Where there's a will, there's an Inheritance Tax.