Thursday, November 18, 2010

see what happens you touch somebody else's junk?!?!?

AP | A malicious computer attack that appears to target Iran's nuclear plants can be modified to wreak havoc on industrial control systems around the world, affecting the production of everything from chemicals to baby formula, government officials and cyberexperts warned Wednesday.

Experts told senators that attackers can use information made public about the so-called Stuxnet virus to develop variations targeting other industries, and that the worm's consequences go "beyond any threat we have seen."

The code has attacked industrial sites in Iran and several other countries, and infected several employees' laptops at the Bushehr nuclear plans. Iran has said it believes Stuxnet is part of a Western plot to sabotage its nuclear program, but experts see few signs of major damage at Iranian facilities.

Specific industrial control systems using Windows software are vulnerable to the code. These are used in many critical sectors, from automobile assembly to mixing products such as chemicals and baby formula, Sean McGurk, acting director of Homeland Security's national cybersecurity operations center, told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.

"This code can automatically enter a system, steal the formula for the product you are manufacturing, alter the ingredients being mixed in your product and indicate to the operator and your antivirus software that everything is functioning as expected," McGurk testified at a cybersecurity hearing.