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Researcher Finds Nearly Two Dozen SCADA Bugs In a Few Hours 104

Posted by samzenpus
from the target-rich-environment dept.
Trailrunner7 writes "It is open season on SCADA software right now. Last week, researchers at ReVuln, an Italian security firm, released a video showing off a number of zero-day vulnerabilities in SCADA applications from manufacturers such as Siemens, GE and Schneider Electric. And now a researcher at Exodus Intelligence says he has discovered more than 20 flaws in SCADA packages from some of the same vendors and other manufacturers, all after just a few hours' work."
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Researcher Finds Nearly Two Dozen SCADA Bugs In a Few Hours

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  • segmentation (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:22PM (#42099167)

    This is why SCADA needs to be built out separately from your data network.

  • Re:segmentation (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:30PM (#42099265)

    This is why SCADA needs to be built out separately from your data network.

    While that is indisputably a good idea, it does not cover all the bases. Disgruntled employees, industrial espionage, and state-sponsored sabotage (in the case of critical or defense industries) won't let a silly air gap stop them.

    As Iran learned at its peril.

  • by mcl630 (1839996) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:43PM (#42099423)

    Nothing in your rant has anything to do with SCADA.

  • by Crypto Gnome (651401) on Monday November 26, 2012 @06:46PM (#42099465) Homepage Journal
    Unfortunately in this risk-vs-reward scenario there's a get-out-of-jail free card which we've ALL seen played fast-n-loose recently.

    If your industry is "to big to fail" the government will step in and throw money at the problem.

    So it's actually a financially viable proposition to invest in crappy workmanship, shoddy systems, and brain dead fundamentally unstable computing systems until A CRISIS LOOMS then wait for The Government so save your sorry ass.

    It's EXACTLY what the banking/finance industry recently did in the US.

    They KNEW perfectly well that what they did, while technically not illegal, was A REALLY REALLY BAD IDEA which *might* (possibly) not blow up in their faces, while making them insanely rich.

    If business are perfectly happy with suchlike RAMPANT STUPIDITY (er I mean UNCONTROLLED GREED) even before the Government had made their "too big to fail" bailout, how much more likely is such behaviour these days?

    Remember folks: if your screwup is BIG enough, there are NO CONSEQUENCES... ANY risk, no matter HOW insane, is worth it - as long as the scale of the potential disaster is large enough.
  • Re:firewalls! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by tlhIngan (30335) <(ten.frow) (ta) (todhsals)> on Monday November 26, 2012 @07:09PM (#42099713)

    Everyone knows about the holes, including the manufacturers. They're designed to operate on controlled, private networks. Every time someone gets hacked, they should go after the implementors, not the vendors as they should factor security onto their site designs. I'm not excusing the manufacturers, just people need to know this is engineering and not infosec - people buy black boxes which do stuff and that's all that matters to them.

    The problem is even airgapped networks can be broken into. See stuxnet and flame - they exploited several machanisms to install themselves onto airgapped networks. It also went to show that even airgaps can be broken into if you don't need much in the way of return information - you just need to get onto the network, and not send data back out. Heck, the USAF had their UAV computers infected with a virus.

    The weakest part of an airgapped network is the maintenance thereof - add some new PLCs to the network? Well, they have to be configured to work with everything else, so someone has to plug something into it to configure it. And that something is unknown - it could be a technician's laptop, it could be a thumb drive, etc.

    The thing is, an airgapped network has to be maintained, and it's really hard to do so without at some point having to plug something in-between the gap. (For Stuxnet, it was a software update or other thing, for the USAF, it was... map updates). And at some point, data has to be transported across

    Heck, even the thumbdrive isn't invulnerable - it could for example be infected during manufacturing.

    In the end, all networks are interconnected. Some less so than others, but eventually they will have to be in some shap or form.

  • by Beardo the Bearded (321478) on Monday November 26, 2012 @08:05PM (#42100141)

    At first I thought it was pretty silly but then I remembered that the Chinese government had such in-depth control of Nortel's systems that they could control the thermostats. [www.cbc.ca]

    So it's really only one step away from something that happened in real life.

To thine own self be true. (If not that, at least make some money.)

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