Hawaiian Electric attacked daily by hackers as White House warns of ransomware – Honolulu, Hawaii

Honolulu, Hawaii 2021-06-09 03:18:37 –

HONOLULU (KHON2) — This country has been hit by a viral epidemic, but not COVID-19.

Ransomware is already raising meat and gas prices nationwide. White House officials warn About cyber attacks on utilities.

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Ransomware is malware that locks your computer until the user pays the hacker a ransom, often requested in the form of cryptocurrencies or gift cards.

Hawaiian Electric (HECO) is familiar with cyber attacks. HECO spends millions of dollars each year on cybersecurity, and as hackers become more sophisticated, that number grows by 20% each year.

“Every day we repel thousands of attacks and investigations,” said HECO spokesman Shannon Tangonan.

HECO adds that staff can keep the power on manually in the event of an attack. This is very important as there are several military bases in Hawaii.

“On Oahu, not only the security of the grid, but also the security of the nation is important, so we take the responsibility of keeping the troops on,” said Tangonan.

Hawaii-based retired Marine Corps lieutenant colonel Hal Kampfer said countries like Russia and China are attacking as well as the United States, but the United States is more advanced than its defense capabilities.

“I was worried that they had a bot in our utility. They generally thought we had a bot in their utility. Mutual assured destruction is less. There wasn’t. If they turned off our lights, we would turn them off, “Kampfer said.

The Hawaii Department of Energy (HSEO) is responsible for coordinating resources and responses between the energy sector and governments in emergencies. Hawaii’s power grid, unlike most states in the United States, is isolated.

Chris Yunker, Managing Director of HSEO, said, “Our grid has its own challenges because we cannot take advantage of large bulk energy systems to draw power from other regions.

The state is considering participating in a bi-annual national training.

“There are twice-yearly GridX exercises organized by the National Regulatory Utilities Association, and regulated utilities are invited to participate as participants in grid exercises. This year we are focusing on the cyber element,” said the HSEO program. The manager says. Mark Want.

The ransomware itself can be very sophisticated, but targeting victims is very easy. Whether it’s a utility, a large corporation, or an individual, it’s usually just a click.

“Clicking on a link will take you to a website that uploads this ransomware, which will take you to a suspicious link that appears to be legal,” said cybersecurity expert Chris Duque.

Duque tells us to avoid links from unknown senders. Even if the sender is familiar with it, check the address to make sure it matches the sender’s name. Pay attention to the type of USB drive you insert into your personal computer.

Employees can be trained to detect ransomware attacks, Duque says it is important for organizations to train them to detect suspicious emails and links. However, they are as safe as the least trained employees.

“All of these networks can provide the greatest technical defenses, but the problem is that humans are the weakest links within those defenses, as long as everyone working in the organization has an email address. “That’s what technical expert Ryan Ozawa said.

Hawaiian Electric attacked daily by hackers as White House warns of ransomware Source link Hawaiian Electric attacked daily by hackers as White House warns of ransomware

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