Catastrophic cyber attack on U.S. grid possible, but not likely
Warnings about U.S. critical infrastructure’s vulnerabilities to a catastrophic cyber attack – a cyber “Pearl Harbor” or “9/11” – began more than 25 years ago. But they have become more insistent and frequent over the past decade.
Former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta warned in a 2012 speech of both a “cyber Pearl Harbor” and a “pre-9/11 moment.”
They have also expanded from within the security industry to the mass media. It was almost a decade ago, in 2007, that the Idaho National Laboratory demonstrated that a cyber attack could destroy an enormous diesel power generator – an event featured in a 2009 segment on the CBS news magazine “60 Minutes.”