U.S. energy sector organizations have been warned by the FBI regarding potentially escalated Russian and Chinese hacking threats amid changes in the worldwide energy supply chain, according to The Record, a news site by cybersecurity firm Recorded Future.
Significant shifts in the liquefied natural gas supply chain following sanctions imposed on Russia amid its war against Ukraine, which made the U.S. a major exporter of LNG to the EU, have made U.S. energy organizations attractive targets for Russian threat actors, said the FBI in its industry notification.
On the other hand, China, which has high oil import dependence, is having its state-backed hackers exploit common security flaws in a bid to infiltrate networks over the past three years.
"China doesn't make a lot of noise, but the small localized intrusions are helping build their network attack capabilities, likely for future use. There's no doubt that the energy sector is on the front lines of malicious cyber-activity right now as China preps the battlefield," said AVANGRID Vice President and Chief Security Officer Brian Harrell, who was previously an assistant secretary for infrastructure protection at the Department of Homeland Security."