Colonial Pipeline - Worry About Hackers
I don’t have to worry about hackers – I don’t have anything they want/need

Most people own cars that need gas to get around – so, the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack affects you!

The Colonial Pipeline cyberattack took place on May 7, 2021, although general public wasn’t aware of the situation until later. And typically didn’t affect you personally until maybe later Monday or Tuesday when you need gas. The Colonial Pipeline, an American oil pipeline system that originates in Houston, Texas the largest US refined fuel pipeline, suffered a ransomware cyberattack that forced computerized equipment managing the pipeline to shut down, and is currently still down.

Colonial transports approximately 45% of all fuel consumed on the East Coast. The attack forced the company to halt operations of its 5,500 miles of pipeline.

The cyberattack “temporarily halted all pipeline operations” and cybersecurity firm FireEye, which operates the Mandiant cyberforensics team, was reportedly pulled in to assist. 

The ransomware outbreak, linked to the DarkSide group, that struck Colonial Pipeline’s networks.  It appears that DarkSide operators targeted the business side rather than operational systems, which implies the intent was money-orientated rather than designed to send the pipeline crashing down.

The initial attack vector isn’t known, but it may have been an old, unpatched vulnerability in a system; a phishing email that successfully fooled an employee; the use of access credentials purchased or obtained elsewhere that were leaked previously, or any other number of tactics employed by cybercriminals to infiltrate a company’s network.

In a Colonial Pipeline statement on May 10, 2021:

“Restoring our network to normal operations is a process that requires the diligent remediation of our systems, and this takes time. In response to the cybersecurity attack on our system, we proactively took certain systems offline to contain the threat, which temporarily halted all pipeline operations, and affected some of our IT systems. To restore service, we must work to ensure that each of these systems can be brought back online safely.

While this situation remains fluid and continues to evolve, the Colonial operations team is executing a plan that involves an incremental process that will facilitate a return to service in a phased approach. This plan is based on a number of factors with safety and compliance driving our operational decisions, and the goal of substantially restoring operational service by the end of the week. The Company will provide updates as restoration efforts progress.”

Bloomberg says that during the attack, over 100GB in corporate data was stolen in just two hours.

Moral of the blog: You do have to worry about hackers! They may not directing attack you, but they can disturb you life.

Corporate Information Technologies provides small to mid-market organizations with expert I.T. services including compliance assessment, cybersecurity penetration tests, and comprehensive business continuity planning services. Corporate Information Technologies can help organizations, quantify, create, refine, and mitigate the risks presented by business threatening disasters in whatever form they may be disguised. 

Don’t Gamble With Your Security  Contact us

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