The U.S. power grid is vulnerable to Chinese attack as the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations answers “yes” to the question of whether or not it is.
According to Engineering.com, Is the U.S. power grid vulnerable to Chinese attack? According to recent hearings by the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, the answer is, “yes.”
The committee is concerned about the vulnerability of cloud-connected systems to cyber-attacks but also noted that physical infrastructure attacks in the form of terrorism or vandalism increased 77 percent in 2022 over the previous year.
The timing of these hearings, during negotiations over Chinese access to American technology, isn’t a coincidence. But from an engineering perspective, the vulnerability of a nationwide interconnected power distribution system is hardly front-page news. Security of cloud-connected systems is an expensive and challenging problem for multiple industries from defense companies handling sensitive information to Internet platforms concerned about the security of customer data.
While cyber security isn’t a strictly engineering problem, protecting critical grid infrastructure against terrorism and vandalism is. There are three basic approaches to security and resiliency: predictive analytics and defensive measures to thwart attacks before they happen, hardening of the physical infrastructure and system redundancy.