WASHINGTON (AP) – Energy Minister Ennifer Granholm says people have “ended” with a shortage of gasoline following a ransom cyber attack that forced the country’s largest gas pipeline to shut down.
Problems culminated Thursday evening, և service was to return to normal in many places by the end of the weekend. Granholm said in an interview with The Associated Press on Friday.
“The good news is that gas station shutdowns are 12% below their peak,” he said, adding that about 200 stations are returning to service every hour since Friday afternoon. “It will still work on its system in the next few days, but we need to get it back to normal soon.”
A cyber-attack by hackers demanding ransom to free computer systems and hit them on May 7 hit the “Colonial Pipeline.” The hackers did not take control of the pipeline, but the Georgian company stopped it so that malicious software would not affect the industry. management systems.
The colonial pipeline stretches from Texas to New Jersey and supplies about 45% of the gasoline consumed on the East Coast. The shutdown caused a shortage of pumps in the South ներում at empty stations at the Washington Dump.
President Biden noted that US officials do not believe in the involvement of the Russian government, but said: “We have good reason to believe that the perpetrators of the attack are living in Russia.”
As Colonial reported on Friday that it had made “significant progress” in resuming full service, two people who reported it confirmed that the company had paid about $ 5 million in ransom.
Granholm, like other officials in the Biden administration, urged drivers not to panic or to run out of gas.
“Really, petrol is coming,” he said. “If you take more than you need, it becomes a self-proclaimed prophecy of deficiencies. “Let’s share a little with our neighbors, everyone should know that everything will be fine in the next few days.”
The Granholm agency is leading the federal response to the ransomware attack. He said the incident showed the vulnerability not only of US infrastructure but also of personal computers. Granholm says his 86-year-old mother was recently attacked for ransom on her iPad.
“So it happens everywhere,” he said. “All these cybercriminals see an opportunity in the cloud, in our communication. And so we all have to be very vigilant. This means that we must have security systems on our devices, և we must not individually torture anyone with attachments of strangers. In the mail. I mean, it’s just around us. “
He said Biden had signed an executive order on cybersecurity this week, with the Department of Energy and other agencies working to protect potential infrastructure.
Most US pipeline infrastructure, like Colonial, is privately owned. The chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which oversees interstate pipelines, said this week that the United States should set mandatory cybersecurity standards for power pipelines.
“Simply encouraging voluntary best practices in pipelines is an insufficient response to the ever-increasing complexity of malicious cyber actors,” said FERC President Richard Glick.
“We definitely need to look at it,” Granholm said on Friday, adding that pipeline companies have voluntary standards. “Although it may be private property, the public uses it. So I think we have to look at it to make sure they are committed to the freshest, the best. ”
John on Study, spokesman for the Oil Pipeline Association, declined to comment on Glick’s offer. The industry has historically opposed government mandates on cyber security.
Granholm says the lifeguard attack should play a role as Congress considers Biden’s $ 2.3 trillion infrastructure proposal.
“Obviously, the pipelines should be considered a part of it,” he said. “Cyber security should be considered a part of it. Energy infrastructure, including transmission networks, should be part of this. We need to modernize the whole council, and I hope that there will be some interest in the bipartisan way to see modernization in the nation’s infrastructure. “