May 11 2021
Welcome to our tech news roundup – this is the place where we keep you up to date on the latest technology happenings, cybersecurity news, and more. Here’s what’s going on in the tech world today:
The largest fuel pipeline in the US was targeted with ransomware
The Colonial Pipeline carries over 2 million barrels of diesel, gasoline, and jet fuel a day – making up 45% of the East Coast’s supply. It’s safe to say that when it was knocked offline by a ransomware gang, it caused huge amounts of chaos.
The attack took place last Friday, and caused US petrol prices to increase by 1.5% and counting. As a result, the US government has had to issue emergency legislation that relaxes the rules on transporting fuel by road, to stop a domino effect of US states being largely without power. The government has also relaxed rules on the number of hours fuel truck drivers can work, in order to meet the demand. Read more here.
Dell has released a security patch for hundreds of its computer models
If you’ve bought a Dell computer or laptop at any point between now and 2009, you might want to listen up. The computer tech giant recently released a huge patch that fixes a serious vulnerability in its computers, going all the way back to the late 2000’s. The vulnerability cam be found in a driver used by Dell’s firmware update utilities and allows threat actors to gain full kernel-level permissions in Windows. This vulnerability affects 380 Dell models, from old 2009 PC’s to the latest gaming laptops. If you don’t want a hacker gaining full control of your PC, you had better update it fast! Read more here.
Are smart cities safe?
The National Cyber Security Centre has issued a warning to councils that smart cities may be the next big target for hackers. We’ve seen ransomware gangs terrorise councils and other government bodies, as well as schools and hospitals – nowhere is off-limits. Recently in America, we’ve also seen threat actors attack vital utilities such as water treatment centres and fuel pipelines. What happens when all of these things are interconnected?
Internet-connected devices and sensors have been implemented within forward-moving urban areas, but enemy states and hacker gangs could exploit this connectivity to hold an entire smart city to ransom. The NCSC has published guidance for councils to combat this threat, something they’ll hopefully take into account as metropolitan areas develop over time. Read more here.
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