infosec-news February 2011 archive
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infosec-news: [ISN] No, Hackers Can’t Open Hoover Dam Floodgat

[ISN] No, Hackers Can’t Open Hoover Dam Floodgates

From: InfoSec News <alerts_at_nospam>
Date: Fri Feb 04 2011 - 11:29:34 GMT
To: isn@infosecnews.org

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/02/hoover/

By David Kravets
Threat Level
Wired.com
February 3, 2011

The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is shooting down a key legislative
talking point: that the internet “kill-switch” legislation is needed to
prevent cyberterrorists from opening the Hoover Dam’s floodgates.

The brouhaha started last week, when legislative aides on the Homeland
Security and Governmental Affairs committee offered Threat Level
examples of why the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act was
needed. The bill, one aide said, would give the president the power to
force “the system that controls the floodgates to the Hoover Dam” to cut
its connection to the net if the government detected an imminent
cyberattack.

At a panel in Washington last week, a GOP staffer working on the bill
was even more terrifying. “We are very concerned about an electronic
control system that could cause the floodgates to come open at the
Hoover Dam and kill thousands of people in the process,” said Brandon
Milhorn, staff director of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental
Affairs Committee. ”That’s a significant concern.”

It turns out, though, that all the Hoover Dam doomsaying doesn’t sit
well with Bureau of Reclamation, which runs the power-generating
facility on the Arizona-Nevada state line.

[...]

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