Short answer… YES.
Authorities (the people who run the grid and US intelligence agencies) used to talk about the POSSIBILITY… that hackers were EXPLORING intrusions into the grid and that there could be danger… SOMEDAY. And that was the tone of our last post on this topic.
But that’s not how they talk any longer.
UPDATE: Now they say that other countries are IN the grid and could cause disruption AT ANY TIME.
The main countries of concern are Russia, China, Iran and North Korea. Non-governmental terrorist groups are, of course, also a concern. Russia has already attacked Ukraine in this way, shutting down part of its grid. Other attacks in the US have been against government agencies, businesses and individuals. Different types of attacks can include shutting down computerized systems, misinformation and stealing government or commercial secrets. Motives can be political or financial or personal.
Symantec, a major company in the field, has published their 24th Internet Security Threat Report. They describe thousands of websites compromised per month, many tens of millions of people’s data stolen, ransomeware attacks skyrocketing. And don’t ever think you are too small to be attacked.
So what does all this mean to you?
Much of this is happening beyond levels that you and I can touch… where the action needs to come from government, the military and huge corporations. But even there, perhaps we can have influence… we can encourage them to act.
But even without a disastrous attack happening, we periodically talk to people who have been without power for weeks… in a few cases as much as two months. What would that mean to you? Such power outages are not one in a million possibilities! Then how much worse could it be of a deliberate attack was launched?
What can we do?
We can, at least, look after our families as much as possible. What does that mean? Perhaps, at the very least, ensuring backup food and water, to get through a possibly extended power outage.
Worldwide Threat Assessment of the US Intelligence Community: Senate Select Committee on Intelligence