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Hackers ‘Likely Compromised’ UK Energy Targets

The UK’s National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has warned that hackers have been targeting the country’s energy sector, and some targets are likely to have been compromised, according to a document by the cyber security center obtained by Motherboard from an industry source on the condition of anonymity.

The NCSC, which is part of the UK’s intelligence agency GCHQ, said in the document, as carried by Motherboard:

“The NCSC is aware of connections from multiple UK IP addresses to infrastructure associated with advanced state-sponsored hostile threat actors, who are known to target the energy and manufacturing sectors.”

The most recent wave of hacking activity began in early June, and sectors that have been targeted also include engineering, industrial control, and water utilities, according to the report.

“NCSC believes that due to the use of wide-spread targeting by the attacker, a number of Industrial Control System engineering and services organisations are likely to have been compromised,” the report reads.

The BBC reported that according to its own follow-up, the document was legitimate. 

A spokesperson for NCSC told Motherboard in an email: “We are aware of reports of malicious cyber activity targeting the energy sector around the globe. We are liaising with our counterparts to better understand the threat and continue to manage any risks to the UK.”

Related: The Biggest Obstacles For China’s $900 Billion Silk Road

The warning by the UK’s cyber security center was reported roughly at the same time as an unsourced report from The Times from Saturday said that senior engineers at Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board (ESB) were targets of hacking last month by a group understood to allegedly have ties with Russia.

Irish news outlet RTE reported that the ESB said there was no breach in its system.

The document by the UK’s NCSC “does not mention Russia or any of its intelligence agencies by name,” Motherboard reports.

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By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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