[ISN] Agencies to Teach Cybersecurity Protection

From: InfoSec News (alerts@private)
Date: Wed Jul 19 2006 - 22:30:57 PDT


Associated Press Writer
July 19, 2006

BOISE, Idaho Federal scientists who study how hackers try to break into 
computer-based controls for nuclear reactors and other automated 
industrial systems are passing the secrets on to the private operators of 
such facilities.

The U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Department of Homeland Security 
will sponsor free classes in protecting remote controls of critical 
infrastructure during an international cybersecurity summit in Las Vegas 
Sept. 28-30.

Researchers from the Idaho National Laboratory will demonstrate 
cybersecurity attacks on Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition, or 
SCADA, networks that regulate electrical-supply systems and other 
automated industrial controls of potential terrorist targets, such as 
railroads, chemical plants and hydroelectric dams.

The courses were held once before, in March, at a similar conference in 
Orlando, Fla., sponsored by the SANS Institute, a Maryland-based 
computer-security organization. More than 400 information technology 
workers from 23 countries attended the classes, said Ethan Huffman, a 
spokesman for the Idaho National Laboratory's national security programs.

"These are the people that deal with these systems every day and that's 
who we want to help,"he said.

At the Idaho site, the Energy Department operates the National SCADA Test 
Bed, which analyzes commercially manufactured control systems for 
utilities to determine hacker vulnerabilities and strengthen security.

Homeland Security also uses the Idaho National Laboratory to analyze 
security threats to computerized controls for non-energy businesses such 
as telecommunications and financial services.

Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.

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