U.S. Investigates Cyber Attack on Illinois Water System
Federal investigators are looking into a report that hackers managed to remotely shut down a utility's water pump in central Illinois last week.
The November 8 incident was described in a one-page report from the Illinois Statewide Terrorism and Intelligence Center, according to a Reuters report.
The attackers obtained access to the network of a water utility in a rural community west of the state capital Springfield with credentials stolen from a company that makes software used to control industrial systems, according to the report.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are examining the matter, the report said.
Cyber security experts said that the reported attack highlights the risk that attackers can break into what is known as Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems. They are highly specialized computer systems that control critical infrastructure -- from water treatment facilities, chemicals plants and nuclear reactors to gas pipelines, dams and switches on train lines, the report said.
The district serves some 2,200 customers in a rural district West of Springfield.