The Overall Impact
Executives in the oil and gas industry are aware and warn that a cyber attack could cause “real-world” damage compared to a typical breach in the security of information systems. They also warn of the realistic chance that a hacker could take over a control system that would lead to grave damages including a negative environmental impact. Take into consideration all of the compressors, oil wells, turbines, and power plants that a control system manages. Hackers gaining control of the components of an energy system could ultimately affect every level of operation including innocent bystanders.
Countries that are highly dependent on gas and oil would literally be shut down by a cyber attack. 60% of the energy in the United States is produced by gas and oil. The impact of a cyber attack would be detrimental, and the costs associated with rebuilding the nation would be immense. The threat of hackers interrupting the daily operation of the oil and gas industry is real. Corporations need to take a proactive approach to meet the threat with a prepared defense. Hackers live for the opportunity to attack when organizations seem to be the most vulnerable.