The U.S. Cyber Conflict With Russia - Carlos GaminoBy Carlos Gamino

The New York Times dropped a news bombshell in mid-June that says Washington is trying to install malware in Russia’s electrical power grid – a new front in the cyber war between our two countries. The incursion is part of the U.S. response to Moscow’s efforts to disrupt the outcome of the 2018 midterm elections, and many in Washington acknowledge the risk of escalating what’s being dubbed the “Digital Cold War” but want to become more aggressive.

Officials in the current administration say that the U.S. has stepped up its cyberattacks, with one senior intelligence official telling the New York Times, “It has gotten far, far more aggressive over the past year. We are doing things at a scale that we never contemplated a few years ago.”

It hasn’t been a secret that the U.S. has been meddling in Russia’s electrical grid for years, but now the Pentagon and U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) are overseeing the installation of malware into that country’s systems.

It’s retaliatory, too.

The Department of Homeland Security and the Federal Bureau of Investigation have issued warnings for years that Russia has inserted – and may still be inserting – malware that could sabotage U.S. power plants, oil and gas pipelines, and water supplies at any time.

““We now have evidence they’re sitting on the machines, connected to industrial control infrastructure, that allow them to effectively turn the power off or effect sabotage,” said Eric Chien, a security technology director at Symantec. The only thing missing? Political motivation.

What Do You Think?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the new Digital Cold War between the U.S. and Russia, so please join the conversation on my Facebook page or on my Twitter feed to let us know what you think!

Carlos Gamino