Sponsor Robert Siciliano as he runs the Boston Marathon for Miles for Miracles, Children's Hospital Boston
ROBERT SICILIANO is fiercely committed to informing, educating, and empowering Americans so they can be protected from violence and crime in the physical and virtual worlds.

FREE EBOOK

Check here if you're human

Sponsors

Malware Hack Attacking the Grid…BIGLY

0
Pin It

For more than four years, malware has been posing as legitimate software and infecting industrial equipment across the globe.

The malware, which looks just like the Siemens control gear software, has affected at least seven plants in the US. According to security experts, the malware was specifically designed to attack this industrial equipment, but what it does is not totally known. It is only described as a type of “crimeware.”

The malware was first hinted at in 2013, but at that time, it was not seen as dangerous, and many anti-virus programs were flagging it as dangerous, but it was considered a false positive. Eventually, it was seen as a type of basic malware, and upon further inspection, it was found that there are several variations. The most recent flag was in March 2017.

This particular infestation is only one of many malware infections that target industry. Approximately 3,000 industrial locations are targeted with malware each year, and most of them are Trojans, which sometimes can be brought in by staff on found or compromised USB sticks.

Most of these programs aren’t extremely harmful, meaning they won’t shut down production. However, what they could do is pave the way for more dangerous threats down the road. It also allows for sensitive information to be released.

It is not easy for hackers to infiltrate an industrial plant, and it takes good knowledge of layout, industrial processes, and even engineering skills to pull something like that off. This goes way beyond a simple malware attack.

However, these attacks have also brought to light the issue of how many legitimate files are being flagged as malware and vice versa. This means that the files can be used by the bad guys, who can then target a specific industrial site. There are thousands of these programs out there, ripe for the picking by observant hackers.

What can they do if they get this information? They could find out where the site is, who operates it, the layout and configuration, what software they have, and even what equipment they are using. Though this wouldn’t give them everything they need, it would be enough to plan a bigger, more dangerous attack.

Robert Siciliano personal security and identity theft expert and speaker is the author of 99 Things You Wish You Knew Before Your Identity Was Stolen. See him knock’em dead in this identity theft prevention video.

About the Author
ROBERT SICILIANO, CEO of IDTheftSecurity.com is fiercely committed to informing, educating, and empowering Americans so they can be protected from violence and crime in the physical and virtual worlds. His "tell it like it is" style is sought after by major media outlets, executives in the C-Suite of leading corporations, meeting planners, and community leaders to get the straight talk they need to stay safe in a world in which physical and virtual crime is commonplace. Siciliano is accessible, real, professional, and ready to weigh in and comment at a moment's notice on breaking news.

Similar Posts

  • Businesses struggling to keep up with latest wave of malware attacks
    Companies have been struggling for years to keep cyber-attacks at bay. Cyberthieves are working faster than ever before to send out their malicious attacks, and it’s become increasingly difficult for companies to keep up. CNN reports that almost one million malware strains are released every day. In 2014, more than 300 million new types of malicious
  • What is a Keylogger?
    Whether it is called a keylogger, spyware or monitoring software, it can be the equivalent of digital surveillance, revealing every click and touch, every download and conversation. A keylogger (short for keystroke logger) is software that tracks or logs the keys struck on your keyboard, typically in a covert manner so that you don’t know that
  • Researchers Say Office of Personnel Management Hack Leads to Ransomware
    In June, 2015, it was revealed by an anonymous source that the Office of Personnel Management was hacked. This office, which administers civil service, is believed to have been the target of the Chinese government. This is one of the largest hacks in history involving a federal organization. Slowly, the motivation behind the hacking is being
  • What is a Denial-of-Service Attack?
    You may have heard news reports about popular websites such as CNN, Amazon and Yahoo! being taken down by a DoS attack, but have you ever wondered what DoS means? This common tech term stands for “denial-of-service,” where an attacker attempts to prevent legitimate users from accessing a website entirely or slowing it down to the
  • USB Drives – With Convenience Comes Risk
    I’m sure most of us have used a USB drive (or thumb drive) at one point or another. They are super convenient to transfer files, especially when they are too large for email or you don’t have access to an Internet connection. But it’s this same convenience of being portable, readily available, and inexpensive that make

Comments are closed.

Xtreme School

Featured in

Anderson Cooper John Stossel Robert Siciliano Featured in
Browse by Month

Browse by Category