The Lexington Institute hosted a Cybersecurity of the Electric Grid Capitol Hill Forum on Friday, June 8th at 12pm.
If a mass power outage were to result from a cyberattack on the electric grid, national security and economic stability would be threatened. This is because hospitals, banks, factories, pipelines, financial networks, water systems, telecommunications and military bases cannot function without electricity.
Ukraine is an example of a country that had to shut down its grid twice due to a cyberattack. Just last year, a virus called Industroyer, also known as “Crash Override,” was discovered that aims to damage equipment on the electric grid by turning off power, creating rolling blackouts or causing physical destruction. This virus is one example of a potential threat to all substations and circuit breakers which are largely standardized across the world.
Operators of the grid need tools to detect and correct malicious threats in networks before they cause serious damage to the electric system and critical infrastructure. Policymakers and industry need to collectively implement effective strategies so that citizens do not have to worry about cyber threats compromising electricity access.
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