Cyber criminals have always had their eye on SCADA system. With the success of Stuxnet malware, designed to thwart Iranian nuclear facilities, it is hardly surprising that hackers believe SCADA to be a worthy target. Towards the end of December, reports that malware caused a power outage in at least 3 regions of Ukraine made cyber headlines, proof positive that hackers are expanding their attack base. Hackers cleverly planted malware that disconnected electrical substations in the Ivano-Frankivsk region of Ukraine on 23rd December 2015. Several power authorities were infected by what is known as the “BlackEnergy” trojan. First introduced in 2007, the trojan has been updated with a KillDisk module which enables it to destroy critical parts of a computer hard drive as well as sabotaging industrial control systems. Small and medium business owners might find cause for concern in the fact that such a small engineering trick could reach such havoc. Any electrical shutdown could put a business out of action for days, if not weeks, which could be particularly damaging in an industry where there is always stiff competition.
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