Aurora Cyber Attack:
What is the Aurora vulnerability?: Aurora is a vulnerablity to cyber attacks that could sabotage critical systems that provide electricity including the nationwide power grid. This vulnerability effects control systems that operate rotating machinery such as pumps, turbines and so on. The vulnerability of the nation's electrical grid to computer attack is due in part to steps taken by power companies to transfer control of generation and distribution equipment from internal networks to supervisory control and data acquisition, or SCADA, systems that can be accessed through the Internet or by phone lines.
The move to SCADA systems boosts efficiency at utilities because it allows workers to operate equipment remotely. But this access to the Internet exposes these once-closed systems to cyber attacks. So far, incidents of hackers breaking into control systems to cause damage or outages have been scarce although there have been a few. However, the threat of such damage makes control systems an alluring target for extortionists, terrorists, unfriendly governments and others.
Electric utilities, pipelines, railroads and oil companies use remotely controlled and monitored valves, switches and other mechanisms that are vulnerable to attack.
If you have concerns about the potential of or would like further information about Aurora susceptibility of the power grid, contact Penny Schieber, Compliance Coordinator at Dairyland Power Cooperative, firstname.lastname@example.org