Mitigating Malware Threats

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Industrial control systems (ICS) underly many aspects of our critical infrastructure, and there are concerns that they are becoming more vulnerable to hackers. The Cipher Brief has covered the threats to these systems, but recently there have been reports that Russia-affiliated hackers were able to cause power outages in Ukraine by attacking their ICS. We spoke with Kurt Baumgartner from Kaspersky Lab, a cybersecurity company, to find out more about the BlackEnergy malware used in the cyber-attack in Ukraine. According to him, the problem isn’t the malware, it’s the hackers who keep upgrading it to make it more effective.

The Cipher Brief: A malware program called BlackEnergy has been in the news recently in connection with cyber attacks in the Ukraine. What is BlackEnergy, and what does it do?

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