Posted on September 7, 2017 at 12:52 PM
A hacking group called ‘Dragonfly’ have been investigating and sabotaging power facilities in the US, Turkey, and Switzerland according to reports from a cyber security firm called Symantec. It is important to note that there is a hacking plan which is targeting the Energy sector of European countries; the U.S might be a victim of this attack. The hacking plan is aimed at sabotaging the national power grids according to Symantec.
Furthermore, according to series of reports from Symantec, Dragonfly have been maneuvering power systems ever since 2011, but it reduced its operations after it was exposed in 2014. During its operation in 2011, it was reported that “Dragonfly” had clandestinely placed entrance in the industrial control systems of power plants in some European countries and the U.S. More reports from Symantec also say that this hacking group has recommenced its operations and it is alleged that they have penetrated the power plants of some countries in Europe and US. The affected countries in Europe are Turkey and Switzerland.
There are lots of schemes carried out by these hackers and Symantec has warned that “these hackers have to take much interest in knowing how power facilities work to the extent that right now, the group boast of knowing how to take full control of these facilities if it wants to”. It is also imperative to know that, there are lots of criminal activities that “Dragonfly” is involved in, but one of its focal points when it comes to criminal activities is knowing how energy firms work.
Dragonfly operates in a way by dispatching malicious emails which have a leaked internal network attached to it. These are used to install backdoors on the network, thereby permitting hackers to take control of systems that operate these power facilities. Dragonfly is also involved in sending flash updates that are fake in order to hack third-party websites from the energy sector. With these malicious acts, it has almost gained control over most power facilities in the mentioned countries stated above.
Right now, Dragonfly appears to be subtle on its attacks just by gathering lots of information, but Symantec has issued a warning that these attacks may be a prelude to bigger sabotage attacks that may come sooner than later. With these warnings from the cyber security group, lots of researchers are looking for more ways to know the mastermind behind Dragonfly’s campaign. However, reports say that some of the codes used in its systematic operations are in Russian and French “which means that one of these countries was used as a false flag for anyone not to decipher”.
Over the years, the rates of attacks on energy sectors have been on the increase, and a country like Ukraine is a victim with lots of strikes which caused a blackout in 2015. The attack was done by a malicious hacking group called “Sandworm”. Other countries like Britain and US are not left out when it comes to attacks on power facilities; these countries have also been subjects to subtle cyber-attacks.