The ability of Russian intelligence agencies to disrupt U.S. infrastructure should not be doubted, says Jeff Stein at SpyTalk. With a vested interest in President Trump retaining power, the Russians have a motive. Former Bush national security adviser Richard Clarke sees a threat.
In 2018 Dan Coats, the then-director of national intelligence, warned that the Russians had infiltrated the control systems for the U.S. power grid and natural gas pipelines and stayed there.
“The lights are blinking red,” Clarke said.“People used to say I was crazy when I said you could bring down the electric grid through hacking, and then the Russians did in Ukraine, and then they did it again in Ukraine,” Clarke said.
Russian hackers have also launched cyberattacks in the Black Sea nation of Georgia and in Estonia, the former Baltic Soviet state. The Russian GRU military intelligence agency is well positioned to escalate attacks here if it wants.Indeed.
A little over a year ago Congress’s watchdog, the Government Accountability Office, reported that the U.S. electric grid “is becoming more vulnerable to cyberattacks,” with industrial control systems playing major roles in the growing risk.