My Say: Cyber risks in Malaysia’s oil and gas industry

Dateline 2022-04-28, The Edge:

There are two fronts in the Russian invasion of Ukraine: one is the physical fighting and airstrikes and the other is in cyberspace, where cybersecurity experts are battling disinformation, psychological warfare and cyberattacks. Cyberattacks of this nature can and have led to power outages, railway disruptions, interruption of electoral polling systems and, in the case of the war in Ukraine, a disruption of its biggest fixed-line telecommunications network and the ever-present threat of a cyber catastrophe.

The oil and gas (O&G) industry is not immune to these kinds of vulnerabilities. The May 2021 Colonial pipeline hack in the US not only compromised the business’ networks and shut down its operations but also deprived the East Coast of a pipeline that supplied nearly half the region’s fuel. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on both the physical and cyber fronts have exacerbated fears of future cyberattacks by malicious actors on critical energy infrastructure to gain financial, criminal or geopolitical advantage. Findings from the State of Ransomware 2021 revealed that 43% of energy, O&G and utility firms have admitted to paying ransom for ransomware assaults. Another 23% of these firms expect to be affected by ransomware in the future.

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