Sunday, January 20, 2008

CIA: Hackers Shook Up Power Grids

For those of you that saw the movie "Matrix Reloaded," you may (or may not) remember a 3-second scene in which Trinity, played by Carrie-Anne Moss, takes advantage of a buffer overflow exploit as part of an attack to shut down a power grid. (Matrix Reloaded was one of the first movies, I believe, to get some of the technical details right on the big screen-- see "Matrix Sequel Has Hacker Cred" at the Register for more details-- whereas most other movies show silly animations for cyberattacks.)

Well, it seems that the CIA tells us that attacking power grids via the Internet is possible, and has been attempted (albeit outside the U.S.). I'm not sure if the technical details have been disclosed (yet?), but there's some rumblings that the attacks required some insider information, which is not surprising but no less comforting, and that extortion has been the attackers' goal to date. Here's an article:

CIA: Hackers Shook Up Power Grids

(Similar articles are available at )

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