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Pipeline Security Tunnel Vision

 

Several security topics have elicited just as much mythology as pipeline security incidents. It’s the character of the esoteric tools involved perhaps, the whole tales of explosions in the tundra, international intrigue, or simply the truth that the level of what could take place, and its impact, is indeed broad. I eventually live across the path between your Permian Basin (the US’s largest petroleum reserves) and the Gulf Coastline refinery belt and am sensitized to pipeline problems. With regards to pipeline security, the end result is that hype outstrips reality often. While the risks could be excellent, overstating them is harming as well.

Let us start out with a turn to some select incidents which have caught the community’s attention back. There’s the Cold Battle “logic bomb” tale about purportedly the biggest kinetic cyber attack actually on a Russian pipeline. Stick to that with the Turkish pipeline incident , where Russia has been the perpetrator allegedly. The critical function of Russian gas in Europe is a major stage of conflict, like the present US – Germany disagreement concerning the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

Coming back in order to the US – there were some very general public and incredibly real incidents – like the current case concerning Colonial, which are worth taking into consideration for the classes they present.

Three years ago almost, four pipelines shut and a barrage of often incorrect headlines announced the incidents down. “ Insecure SCADA Techniques Blamed in Rash of Pipeline Information Network Episodes ”; “ Cyberattack Pings Data Techniques of AT THE VERY LEAST Four Gas Systems ” and much more instead misleading headlines were released. Yet, there is no actual connection with any SCADA techniques, and the queries I obtained around a “ping attack” on fuel networks had been all misplaced. The hype got outstripped the easy reality a sub-contractor for a information exchange was hacked. Provided having less delivery and pricing details, deliveries were halted. No pipeline devices was touched-full stop.

A few months afterwards, homes in better Boston began to explode leading to at the very least 1 tragic death and again significantly confusion. Might this have already been another cyber-attack? The solution was a lot more mundane, but believe it or not deadly. The explosions resulted from the group of operational mistakes resulting in over-pressurized lines resulting in homes.

And now, we’ve some very common looking headlines driving some misguided inferences regarding pipeline networks likewise. So, let’s be very clear. At the proper time of the writing, there’s no proof of any malevolent subversion of a pipeline handle system.

So, what lessons may we learn? The breadth of the systems essential to shipping via pipelines extends significantly beyond what the news and photographs evoke – and therefore the target area extends beyond pigs, pumps, and PLCs. While our minds may be drawn to these huge pipes appearing out of the ground, chances are that the majority of the action occurred in a typical rack room, in a generic information center. Dull perhaps, highly effective yet.

      So, what you can do then?          

Everything called for in america Cert Darkside Ransomware established fact and understood – and none of it really is special to any pipeline. Proper segmentation, multi-aspect authentication, phishing protections, consumer education, patching, and the rest of the best practices is there all. Right now, a lot more than anything – collect actual data, differentiate between what’s unknown and known, avoid speculation, and shift with guidelines with purpose forward.

Also, in case you are directly considering pipeline security, some additional thoughts within this pipeline safety document , compiled by Cisco and Schneider Electric / AVEVA jointly, may be a fine point of reference.

      Additional Assets          

      https://foreignpolicy.com/2012/02/27/think-again-cyberwar/          

      https://www.sans.org/blog/closing-the-case-on-the-reported-2008-russian-cyber-attack-on-the-btc-pipeline/          

      https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-03/day-after-cyber-attack-a-third-gas-pipeline-data-system-shuts          

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merrimack_Valley_gas_explosions#:~:textual content=On%20September%2013%2C%202018%2C%20excessive,%2C%20Andover%2C%20and%20North%20Andover          .

      https://us-cert.cisa.gov/ncas/alerts/aa21-131a          

      https://www.cisco.com/c/en/us/td/docs/solutions/Verticals/Oil_and_Gas/Pipeline/SecurityReference/Security-IRD.html     
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