Over a four-day period in June 20 years ago, hackers simulated an attack on the power grids and 911 emergency systems in eight U.S. cities and then infiltrated and took control of U.S. Pacific Command computers. The simulated attack on the grid and 911 systems was a tabletop game used to create some of the events that would be used in an exercise conducted by a NSA Red Team to actually infiltrate U.S. Pacific Command computers. The results produced an embarrassing wake up call for the Department of Defense that demonstrated that their Information Systems were extremely vulnerable to attack and disruption in any military operation.
The Red Team from the NSA also included the CIA, FBI, State Department, and the Defense Intelligence Agency and the exercise was known as Eligible Receiver 97. The operation used software available on the Internet at that time, no “zero day” classified top-secret code was allowed. The results, in one word, were “Shocking”.