Hacker Attacks on Critical Utilities Double Since 2009

Tuesday, 19 Apr 2011 04:18 PM

By Martin Gould

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Cyber attacks on critical utilities systems have nearly doubled since 2009, according to the McAfee Internet security firm.

A McAfee survey found that 80 percent of the water, gas, and energy firms around the world that responded reported that hackers had compromised their security systems with the past year.

Three-quarters of respondents believe that hackers could disable utility systems significantly within the next two years, leading to catastrophic failure, energy outages and even deaths, reports the BBC.

The infamous Stuxnet worm, which hit 40 percent of utility groups globally last year, may have been created to take over controls of Iranian nuclear facilities, McAfee research suggests.

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