"Lights Out" - Ted Koppel on Electric Grid Cyber Threats

Ted Koppel has a great (as well as terrifying) new book called "Lights Out" - which reads like the premise for a futuristic new series on NetFlix. But make no mistake - this isn't fiction, it's happening right now - and this is essential reading for all of us. According to the U.S. Energy Department, the United States is in "imminent danger" on what is being called a "cyber time bomb". Terrorism isn't just someone with a bomb or gun (while not underestimating the horror of such acts) - but it also includes a massive attack on communications and all power systems that we rely upon daily - and as Mr. Koppel states, the country does not have a current plan to deal with such an attack, as we do in the case of natural disasters such as hurricanes, floods or fires. Koppel further goes on to describe how other countries have dedicated huge efforts into what he terms the "next Pearl Harbor" against the U.S.

A paramount consideration are the consequences to society of such an attack - with food going bad, no communications devices working, and no heat or air conditioning, our lives could quickly sink into a desperate and primitive state. 

The threat could be so devastating, and remedies are so urgent, that in May of this year, President Trump signed an Order which directed key federal agencies to assess preparations for a prolonged power outage resulting from the aforementioned cyber attacks - specifically and deliberately designed to disrupt our power grid.

And, for further reading, read this from Bloomberg. "In the department’s landmark Quadrennial Energy Review, it warned that a widespread power outage caused by a cyber-attack could undermine "critical defense infrastructure" as well as much of the economy and place at risk the health and safety of millions of citizens. The report comes amid increased concern over cybersecurity risks as U.S. intelligence agencies say Russian hacking was aimed at influencing the 2016 presidential election."