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democrats = Hydra
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Discussion Starter #1
http://www.technewsworld.com/story/80722.html?google_editors_picks=true

"Companies providing the world's critical infrastructure are woefully unprepared for cyberattacks despite the increasing threat level, evidenced by the release of the Stuxnet worm and the Shamoon virus in recent years, a survey conducted jointly by the Ponemon Institute and Unisys has found.
Nearly 70 percent of the 599 surveyed oil, gas, utility, energy and manufacturing companies in the past 12 months have reported at least one security breach that cost them confidential information or disrupted operations."

not good.
sure hope ISIS/alQaeda don't have hackers.
Or Putin. Or the Chicoms...

(hope this is in the right section)
 

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Citizen Soldier
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743 Posts
Everything that is controlled by a microprocessor and is connected to a network is prone to being hacked, provided that some point in that network is accessable. I hate to tell you, but that covers almost every machine control interface in the world that was built in the past couple of decades. Manufacturing, utilities, water, sewer, defense, sales, food supply, transportation, you name it, it's vulnerable.
 

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I've been managing the maintenance effort for the water and sewer system for my city since leaving aviation maintenance a few years back. I had to fight hard to keep our SCADA system off the web. Most cities have gone this route since pumps, generators, blowers, whatever can be controlled with a cell phone or tablet by one person...saving money. Internet accessible SCADA systems are extremely vulnerable however. Our systems are not on the internet and limited to each plant. I hope we can keep them this way.
 

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Like our economy, the dollar, our food delivery infrastructure and everything else that makes a modern society function, our utilities follow the same general rule:

It works, until one day it doesn't.
This is how many municipalities operate and maintain their utility infrastructure. When I was hired to manage the maintenance for our water production, distribution, waster water systems I had no background experience. I have 30 + years in aviation maintenance however...and the technologies are similar somewhat. The difference between smaller city utilities and aviation maintenance is...prevention. Aviation maintenance is geared toward finding problems while still small "preventive maintenance"...or overhauling machinery just before failure..."predictive maintenance".
I worked with a software company to develop a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS). This is what aviation has done for decades. Within 4 years of adopting the new preventive maintenance system, we are at 85% preventive maintenance...verses 90% corrective maintenance when I started in my position. I was responding to multiple...daily emergencies and sometimes 24-25 hour work days when first hired. My goal was to achieve a 90% preventive maintenance target....and reduce emergency repairs. We are ahead of schedule...but I'm reversing decades of...don't spend money till it fails. I also hired a retired military maintenance scheduler/planner to manage our CMMS system...a very good one. This was a key position to fill with the absolute best person I could find...and I chose carefully.
Luckily current city leadership is fully on board...but money is getting tight.
 

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Listen to the ghosts
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5,419 Posts
sure hope ISIS/alQaeda don't have hackers.
Or Putin. Or the Chicoms...
Really? Surely you jest...you HAVE to know that Russia and China have dozens, if not hundreds, of hackers whose only job it is to infiltrate the US infrastructure for the purpose of incapacitating us. If DHS/NSA/DOD/FBI and the rest of the alphabet soup do not have plans in place for the eventuality one of those utilities will be incapacitated within one hour of the onset of war, then they should be disbanded for incompetence.
 

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Patriot
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385 Posts
I think an attack on our infrastructure will be the next big terrorist attack. They could kill tens of thousands if not millions just by turning out the lights and they would not even have to figure out how to get pass U.S. Customs or Border Patrol they could do it over the net. Actually, they would not kill anyone the American people would kill each other for them. I have seen up close and personal what happens to people when the power goes out for any extended period of time. If they only turned off the power on the east coast the whole nation would be screwed.
 

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Fertilizer Producer
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3,103 Posts
Really? Surely you jest...you HAVE to know that Russia and China have dozens, if not hundreds, of hackers whose only job it is to infiltrate the US infrastructure for the purpose of incapacitating us. If DHS/NSA/DOD/FBI and the rest of the alphabet soup do not have plans in place for the eventuality one of those utilities will be incapacitated within one hour of the onset of war, then they should be disbanded for incompetence.
The entire alphabet soup collection of agencies couldn't stop the Boston Bombers even when Russia specifically warned us about them years in advance, with data including names and addresses.

I do not hold out hope that our tax dollars will be any more productive when it comes to us stopping a major cyber attack.
 

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Sadly, I would prefer that the utilities maintain their independence and control the security of their own systems and risk them being hacked versus them being under government control where they could be shut down.
 

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Listen to the ghosts
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5,419 Posts
The entire alphabet soup collection of agencies couldn't stop the Boston Bombers even when Russia specifically warned us about them years in advance, with data including names and addresses.

I do not hold out hope that our tax dollars will be any more productive when it comes to us stopping a major cyber attack.
I don't disagree with any of this. I was addressing competence only as to awareness. Anything beyond that is a crap shoot.
 

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Getting There!
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11,458 Posts
Gary McKinnon simply tried connecting to VPN connections using the default logon and password if memory serves. Some officer was given a laptop and never set a secure logon and password.

http://www.unacknowledged.info/gary-mckinnon-nasa-hack/

I would not even call that "hacking." That was just plain stupidity. I do not think that this is an isolated case. The human factor will always be the weakest link in the chain.
 

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60 minutes did a highly interesing segment on cyber attacks, a couple years ago, and it wasn't just all speculative, it was largely very factual. They went into a bit of detail on a major hack that happened to numerous Federal departments, including Defense, that yielded a phenominal amount of into ( I forget exactly, but something like the equivalent of the info held in the Library of Congress,IIRC)
They were speaking to a high ranking FBI agent about it, and asked him of they had a good idea who was behind it, and he said, "We do".
Then they asked him if he would care to enlighten the viewers,and he replied,"I would not." It all had a very omnious tone to it.
They also demonstrated how easy it would be to remotely (via the internet) shut of the right valve, and cause one of the huge,expensive and hard to replace generators we use, to have a complete meltdown, and take itself apart. They actally did it to one of them and filmed it.
Then they went ito detail on how long it would take to have some of these generators imported, since they're no longer manufactured here, and the wait was over a year. And that's just for one, not for fifty of them.
We've discussed this video here a few times, it can be found on You-tube, I believe (might be 2 parts to it, as well).
Anyway, it's VERY well worth the few minutes it takes to watch.
 

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14,874 Posts
"Would you like to play a game?"
Nice one. :thumb:




Dave Bowman: Hello, HAL. Do you read me, HAL?

HAL: Affirmative, Dave. I read you.

Dave Bowman: Open the pod bay doors, HAL.

HAL: I'm sorry, Dave. I'm afraid I can't do that.

Dave Bowman: What's the problem?

HAL: I think you know what the problem is just as well as I do.

Dave Bowman: What are you talking about, HAL?

HAL: This mission is too important for me to allow you to jeopardize it.

Dave Bowman: I don't know what you're talking about, HAL.

HAL: I know that you and Frank were planning to disconnect me, and I'm afraid that's something I cannot allow to happen.
:D:
 

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I am very thankful that our utilities are locally owned, thus small. The water plant doesn't wven have a Facebook page. The power company has a website that keeps customers up to date on events, outages and to.pay bills. I am hoping with such a small customer base (4 small counties) we will be spared a full grid down outage but I do not know which company they buy their power from.
 

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Fertilizer Producer
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60 minutes did a highly interesing segment on cyber attacks, a couple years ago, and it wasn't just all speculative, it was largely very factual. They went into a bit of detail on a major hack that happened to numerous Federal departments, including Defense, that yielded a phenominal amount of into ( I forget exactly, but something like the equivalent of the info held in the Library of Congress,IIRC)
They were speaking to a high ranking FBI agent about it, and asked him of they had a good idea who was behind it, and he said, "We do".
Then they asked him if he would care to enlighten the viewers,and he replied,"I would not." It all had a very omnious tone to it.
Because it was likely classified.

I didn't watch that 60 Minutes episode, but a quick Google search reveals that all our base are belong to China. That includes the F-35, the Patriot interceptor, our Aegis ABM stuff, and so on. Wouldn't surprise to learn that China was behind the hack covered by 60 Minutes.
 

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I just dug up that 60 Minutes segment I referred to earlier. It's not very long, but it's very interesting and informatve. One comment was especially scary, "We're not as worried about hackers that want to steal money, but those that want to destroy the process that accounts for money".

Part 1 of 2:


Part 2 of 2:
 
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