Natural disasters like hurricanes, wildfires, earthquakes and floods are increasing in size and frequency. And when natural disasters strike, communities and organizations are the most vulnerable. Cybercriminals understand this—and they will make it a priority to take advantage of environmental events to create more havoc by targeting physical infrastructure like electric grids, fuel pipelines and water systems with ransomware attacks.
Businesses, state and local governments must respond to this growing threat by better preparing their defenses and regularly running disaster drills and simulations to counter these threats. The more they practice, the better their response will be.
At Pondurance, we joined forces with the Indiana National Guard who conducted a drill at Muscatatuck Urban Training Center in Indiana, to test preparedness and bolster defenses. This drill involved a simulated earthquake followed by a cyberattack, with bad actors swooping in amid the chaos and attacking the water system to try to shut it down as the National Guard deployed its defense tools to protect networks, people and property. We also participated in a workshop for water and wastewater utilities in a red team / blue team cyber simulation event in another effort to bolster defenses by sharing knowledge.