Cyber attack on US 'could be as damaging as 9/11'
Leon Panetta, the US Defence Secretary, has warned of a national security calamity as grave as Pearl Harbor and 9/11 if the United States does not protect critical installations such as power plants and train networks against cyber attacks.
Speaking to business leaders at a conference on board the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum in New York, Mr Panetta painted a grim picture of what could happen if unfriendly foreign forces tampered with the computer systems that control the country's infrastructure. Officials said he was referring in part to Russia, China, Iran and foreign terror groups.
"They could derail passenger trains loaded with lethal chemicals," he suggested. "They could contaminate [cities'] water supplies, or shut down the power grid across large parts of the country." He added: "A cyber attack perpetrated by nation states or violent extremist groups could be as destructive as the terrorist attack of 9/11."
His comments were directed in part at Republicans in Congress who blocked attempts to impose rules on infrastructure firms, saying they would be a burden on private businesses.
- 1 I've been called an abusive and dangerous parent, when all I did was listen to my transgender child
- 2 Smartphones are making children borderline autistic, says psychiatrist
- 3 Why this father didn’t hide his daughter’s heroin overdose in her obituary
- 4 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
Smartphones are making children borderline autistic, says psychiatrist
Nepal earthquake: More than 1,100 killed across four countries and in Mount Everest avalanche
Nepal earthquake: The race is on to help thousands trapped under rubble around Kathmandu, while remote villages face a long wait for help
Royal baby: Live updates as superbug closes ward at St Mary's Hospital where Duchess of Cambridge is due to give birth
Teaching profession headed for crisis as numbers continue to drop and working lives become 'unbearable'
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£26000 - £28000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: Senior Accounts Assistan...
£24000 - £26000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, glo...
£22000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is part of a Group...
£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you a a young, dynamic pers...