US Renewable Energy Sector vulnerable to cyber threats says FBI

The FBI has issued a Private Industry Notification (PIN) warning of vulnerabilities in the US Renewable Energy Sector to cyber-attacks. These attacks, aimed at stealing intellectual property, disrupting operations, ransomware extortion, or gaining political advantage, pose significant risks.

Specifically, the alert targets software that controls hardware and software systems critical for the smooth operation of renewable energy technologies.

Recent legislative efforts, such as the Inflation Reduction Act, have promoted the widespread adoption of renewable energy, reducing reliance on fossil fuels.

Hackers, whether individuals or state-sponsored entities, are increasingly targeting both personal and commercial solar panel systems. They focus on the software that connects solar panels to inverters, which convert direct current into alternating current.

Most of these inverters lack sufficient cybersecurity measures to monitor changes when connected to the internet, making them vulnerable to malicious cyber activities that could cause disruptions or other serious consequences.

In response, the FBI urges all employees and leaders in the renewable energy sector to promptly report any cyber intrusions and highlight potential foreign interference.

To mitigate these threats, the FBI has issued guidelines for companies involved in manufacturing or adopting renewable energy equipment.

In June 2024, cybersecurity firm Dragos highlighted vulnerabilities across the Nordic countries (Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden) and autonomous regions (Greenland, Faroe Islands, Aland) due to their extensive use of renewable energy and infrastructure deployment initiatives in related industries.

Naveen Goud
Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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