The US Reveals Its Pipeline Operators Have Been The Target Of Chinese Cyber Attacks

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The US Reveals Its Pipeline Operators Have Been The Target Of Chinese Cyber Attacks

Fri, 07/23/2021 - 13:18
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Hacker trying to breach a security system (copyright by Shutterstock/Pira25)
Hacker trying to breach a security system (copyright by Shutterstock/Pira25)

A recent statement by the White House, the FBI and the US Department of Homeland Security has revealed that two dozen companies that own and operate oil and gas pipelines in North America have been subjected to cyber-attacks by various Chinese based organisations.

It has been suggested that many of these cyber attacks were intended to be "intrusions [that] were likely intended to gain strategic access” to the industrial control networks that run the pipelines “for future operations rather than for intellectual property theft.” In other words, the hackers were preparing to take control of the pipelines, rather than just stealing the technology that allowed them to function.

In addition, it has been revealed that at least twenty-three operators of natural gas pipelines were subjected to a form of email fraud known as spear phishing, the agencies said that thirteen were successfully compromised, while three were “near misses.” The extent of intrusions into seven operators was unknown because of an absence of data.

The release of such news about Chinese cyber hacking attempts is part of such efforts by the Biden administration to encourage both American public and private agencies and interests to upgrade their efforts to protect the county’s energy infrastructure from such cyber criminal acts and economic sabotage.

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