Business & Investment

U.S. top fuel pipeline remains a few days after reopening after a cyberattack by Reuters

© Reuters. File Photo: A storage tank can be seen in a dateless photo at the Linden Junction Tank Farm in the Colonial Pipeline in Woodbridge, NJ, USA.Colonial Pipeline / Distribution via Reuters / File Photos

Stephanie Kelly and Devika Krishna Kumar

New York (Reuters)-The largest petrol pipeline in the United States will not be fully operational for the next few days due to a ransomware cyberattack accusing a shadowy criminal network called Dark Side.

Attacks on colonial pipelines, which carry nearly half of the fuel consumed on the east coast of the United States, are one of the most devastating digital ransom schemes ever reported.

The impact has not yet been quantified, but pipeline shutdowns will reduce fuel availability in the short term, raise prices, and reduce production as refiners have no way to transport gas. I have no choice but to do it.

Private companies said Monday that they are working on a gradual resumption “with the goal of significantly recovering operational services by the weekend.”

The FBI attributed the cyberattack to Dark Side, a group believed to be based in Russia or Eastern Europe. According to cyber experts, the ransomware targets computers that do not use keyboards in the languages ​​of the former Soviet Republic.

President Joe Biden said so far there is no evidence that the Kremlin is involved.

“The goal is to make money”

“Our goal is to make money, not to cause problems for society,” a statement released in the name of the group on Monday. The statement did not mention the name of the colonial pipeline.

Ransomware is a type of malware designed to encrypt data and lock your computer. Hackers demand payment for the owner to regain access. It’s unclear how much money the hacker wants, and Colonial hasn’t commented on whether it will pay.

Anne Neuberger, National Security Adviser for Cybersecurity, told reporters that the Biden administration did not provide advice on whether the colonial should pay the ransom.

Colonial closed a 5,500-mile (8,850 km) pipeline network on Friday to move fuels such as gasoline, diesel and jet fuel to protect the system.

This episode reveals the vulnerability of the energy infrastructure to hackers. US parliamentarians responded with a call for stronger protection of critical energy infrastructure.

A spokesman for UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the attack showed that UN member states need to fight cybercrime to avoid “a catastrophic impact on the world we all live in.” Stated.

Colonial reopened several small lines between the fuel terminal and the customer’s delivery point on Sunday, releasing locally stored fuel to the customer. On Monday, we manually began operating a multi-product fuel line of 700,000 barrels per day between Greensboro, North Carolina and Maryland while we had existing inventories.

However, its trunk remains closed and alternative smaller ducts Kinder Morgan Inc (NYSE :), which serves the same area, has reached capacity.

Power outages preceded the summer vacation season, when gasoline demand and air travel tend to peak.

Pump pain?

Fearing shortages, consumers in the southeastern United States were in a hurry to refuel. Gas Buddy’s head of oil analysis, Patrick de Khan, said there was a hoarding at gas stations in Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee.

According to the American Automobile Association, the national average gasoline price has risen to $ 2.96 a gallon, which could rise to the highest level since 2014.

In Georgia, truck company owner Marcus Blush was worried that fuel couldn’t be stored on-site to hedge price hikes.

“We pay by pump,” he said. “We haven’t hit us yet, but this will be a big blow.”

Katina Willey, who lives in Florida, went to several gas stations before finding a gas station where fuel was available. “There were lines in three of the five stations I tried,” she said.

If the turmoil continues, fuel suppliers can instead ship by truck and rail. On Sunday, the Ministry of Transport lifted driver restrictions on fuel carriers in 17 states affected by the closure.

US fuel importers have booked tankers to carry gasoline from Europe. Motiva Enterprises and total (PA :) Due to lack of transportation, production at the Gulf Coast plant was reduced on Monday.

U.S. top fuel pipeline remains a few days after reopening after a cyberattack by Reuters U.S. top fuel pipeline remains a few days after reopening after a cyberattack by Reuters

Back to top button