Cybercrooks Hacking Power Grid

In cities outside the US, hackers shut down grid for blackmail
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 20, 2008 8:38 AM CST
Power lines cut are shown in South Williamsport, Pa., in this 2003 file photo.A government video shows the potential destruction caused by hackers seizing control of a crucial part of the U.S. electrical...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Foreign extortionists have managed to hack into US power grids and shut them down, PC World reports, citing a CIA analyst speaking at a security conference this week. "In at least one case, the disruption caused a power outage affecting multiple cities. We do not know who executed these attacks, but all involved intrusions through the Internet," the analyst said.

The analyst did not name the countries affected or give many other details. A cybersecurity expert said there has a been a big increase in hacker attacks on US infrastructure over the last 18 months, and the CIA wouldn't have made this information public at all if it didn't think utilities had to tighten up security fast.