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Cyberattack Impacts Company Behind Mariner East Pipelines

Philadelphia KYW NewsRadio, April 7, 2018, interview with Willy Leichter;

Listen now to Willy’s comments in the radio interview.

In the KYW radio interview, Willy Leichter with information security company Virsec Systems in San Jose CA, discusses a cyberattack that struck the company behind the Mariner East pipelines. Fortunately, the pipelines operating across the country experienced no serious impact. The attackers have not yet been identified but as is common with these attacks, the intruders gained access through a third party provider used by Energy Transfer Partners.

"Very well-funded, very smart hackers are targeting infrastructure, in particular," Willy said. "There's no easy answer other than security has to be taken much more seriously at the government level and at the organization level."

While damaging impact was escaped this time, there will be future attacks and soon. Critical infrastructures are highly vulnerable to these kinds of attacks and therefore are at tremendous risk, particularly from nation state attackers. Just last month (March 2018), the FBI announced Russian hackers invaded US power grids, water treatment plants and other systems. (See Virsec article US-CERT on Russian hackers.)

These incidents serve as wake up calls, including considering security requirements surrounding third party entities.

Listen to radio excerpt