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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Anonymous Could Wipe Out U.S. Power, Feds Say

Posted By on Tue, Feb 21, 2012 at 9:08 AM

click to enlarge Anonymous could take power away from the people
  • Anonymous could take power away from the people

One thing Anonymous is really good for is embarrassing public agencies (BART) -- and their employees (Linton Johnson). But the National Security Agency is worried that the shadowy online hacking group will soon have the power to shut off our power via cyberattack.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting this not-so-public news that within the next year or so, Anonymous will have the ability to cause limited power outages across the United States by attacking the nation's power grid. The scariest part is that these hacktivists could align with governments that hate the U.S., such as Iran's, to wage this kind of destruction.

The good news is that the NSA says it would be no easy feat and "extremely difficult to orchestrate," which buys the government some time to figure out what the hell to do to prevent this.

The hacktivist group has not listed an attack on the power grid as one of its goals, but the NSA notes that it sure is consistent with its latest threats of mass disruption, including its call to shut down the Internet on March 31, known as Operation Global Blackout. What would the world be without Facebook?

"It's a real threat," said James Lewis, a cybersecurity specialist at the Center for Strategic and International Studies who is currently researching the group. "You want to occupy Wall Street? How about turn Wall Street off? Even for a day."

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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