nuclear power plant

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Hackers reportedly targeted nuclear facilities in U.S. and other countries

The hackers used emails with malicious Word documents to gain access.

 

Andrew Wyrich

Tech

Published Jul 7, 2017   Updated May 23, 2021, 12:39 am CDT

Hackers have been targeting the networks of nuclear power stations other energy facilities in the United States and other countries, according to a recent report.

A report from the Department of Homeland Security and Federal Bureau of Investigation released last week said Wolf Creek Nuclear Operating Corporation, which runs a nuclear power plant in Kansas, was among the companies targeted by hackers, the New York Times reports.

It was not clear in the report if the hackers were trying to steal industry secrets or planning to cause destruction, the Times reported, and there is no indication that they were able to access the control systems of the facilities.

“There is no indication of a threat to public safety, as any potential impact appears to be limited to administrative and business networks,” the DHS and FBI said in a statement to the Times.

The report claimed that hackers were trying to map out computer networks to help them in future intrusions, according to the Times, and in most cases targeted control engineers who had direct access to the plants. The origin of the hackers is not known.

In order to get control they used a popular scheme to try and gain access, the newspaper reported, by sending email messages with fake resumes in Microsoft Word documents that contained malware. If someone clicked on the word document, it would steal their credentials.

The hacking occurred in May, the newspaper reported.

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*First Published: Jul 7, 2017, 10:52 am CDT