U.S. government steps-up cyber security to safeguard power grids and software from malicious hacker attacks

April 6, 2021
Administration to produce a so-called operational technology action plan that will begin with the power industry and expand to other critical sectors.

WASHINGTON – The Biden administration is escalating efforts to safeguard the U.S. power grid from hackers BY developing a plan to improve coordination with industry to counter threats and respond to attacks. Government Technology reports. Government Technology reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

6 April 2021 -- Top administration officials, including Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and Deputy National Security Adviser Anne Neuberger, briefed top utility industry executives on the efforts March. The plan, which could prompt widespread changes in standards and cyber defense strategies, is set to be issued within weeks.

The high-level meeting indicated the seriousness of the initiative, which is meant to knit together the government and private business to confront increasingly aggressive actions by U.S. adversaries to target the electrical grid. Those acts include operations to insert malicious software that could be activated to interfere with electricity generation or distribution in the U.S.

Russia is among the adversaries that have already launched such operations, including a sprawling attack in 2017. But other countries targeting the grid include North Korea and Iran. The issue has gained renewed attention in the wake of a sophisticated attack that compromised popular software from Texas-based SolarWinds Corp. The hack, which affected as many as 18,000 SolarWinds customers, has underscored concerns about the vulnerability of the nation’s critical infrastructure amid persistent cyber threats.

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John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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