US Pipeline Network Cyber Attack Affects Electronic Communication System
A cyber attack that happened at a major U.S. Pipeline network has affected the electronic communication system there.
Energy Transfer Partners, which is run by American billionaire businessman Kelcy Warren, was attacked by hackers; the attack had crippled the electronic communication system used by the company. Anyhow, as per reports, the situation has been tackled and the issue overcome.
Bloomberg has reported that the attack, which happened on Monday, didn’t in any way impact the flow of natural gas. The Bloomberg report says- “A cyber attack that hobbled the electronic communication system used by a major U.S. pipeline network has been overcome…Energy Transfer Partners LP was confident that, after 6 p.m. New York time on Monday, files could safely be exchanged through the EDI platform provided by third-party Energy Services Group LLC, the pipeline company said in a notice. Earlier in the day, it reported a shutdown of the system because of an attack, while saying there was no effect on the flow of natural gas.”
As of now, it’s not clear as to who were behind the attack. The Bloomberg report, however, says- “Though it’s not clear who was responsible for the attack, it comes after U.S. officials warned in March that Russian hackers are conducting a broad assault on the nation’s electric grid and other targets. Last month, Atlanta’s municipal government was hobbled for several days by a ransomware attack.”
The EDI platform, which was hit, is used to conduct business through document exchanges with customers done on a computer-to-computer basis. Some other companies too use similar systems, but they haven’t been affected. Bloomberg reports- “Energy Transfer, run by billionaire Kelcy Warren, isn’t the only pipeline company using EDI. Other operators with similar systems include Kinder Morgan Inc. and Tallgrass Energy Partners LP, according to their websites. Representatives for Kinder and Tallgrass said the companies’ systems weren’t affected.” The report further adds-“Boardwalk Pipeline Partners LP also had an EDI outage, though it didn’t provide the cause.”
Vicki Granado, a spokesperson for Energy Transfer Partners has clarified that the cyber attack on the company hasn’t in any way impacted its operations and has also not led to a data breach of any kind.
Energy Transfer Partners LP has a wide network of pipeline units, which includes Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co., Transwestern Pipeline Co., and Rover Pipeline LLC, and which cover a vast area.
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Kevin Jones, Ph.D., is a research associate and a Cyber Security Author with experience in Penetration Testing, Vulnerability Assessments, Monitoring solutions, Surveillance and Offensive technologies etc. Currently, he is a freelance writer on latest security news and other happenings. He has authored numerous articles and exploits which can be found on popular sites like hackercombat.com and others.