Russians Not Controling Springfield Water Pumps

Gizmodo offers another take on the widely reported “Russian plot” to take over control of the water system in Springfield, Illinois:

Threats of Russian espionage can come from the unlikliest of sources, as Jim Mimlitz, owner of Navionics Research, a small integrator firm, knows only too well.

Curran Gardner Public Water District, just outside of Springfield, Illinois, employed Mimlitz’s firm to set up its Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition system (SCADA), and the spy games began when Mimlitz went on vacation in Russia. While there, he logged into the SCADA system to check some data, then logged off and went back to enjoying Red Square and the finest vodka mother Russia has to offer.

However, five months later a Curran Gardner water pump fails, and an IT contractor eyeballing the logs spots the Russian-based IP address. Fearing stolen credentials, he passes the info up the chain of command to the Environmental Protection Agency (as it governs the water district) without bothering to contact Mimlitz, whose name was in the logs next to the IP address. The EPA then passed along the paranoia to a joint state and federal terrorism intelligence center, which issued a report stating that SCADA had been hacked.

Related Dailywireless articles include; SCADA: How Big a Threat?, Stuxnet: Year One, Cyber War: The New Frontier, Satellite Hacked?, Chinese Telecoms Investigated As Security Threat, Wireless Providers Team on AMR and SmartGrid.

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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