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Government Not Prepared for Grid Attack, Koppel Warns

US unprepared for a cyberattack on electric grid, journalist warns.

The federal government is not prepared to deal with a cyberattack that cripples the power grid, Ted Koppel warns in his new book, "Lights Out."

"The current secretary of homeland security is sure that a plan to deal with the aftermath of a cyberattack on the grid exists, but he doesn't know any details of the plan," Koppel writes. "As of this writing, there is no specific plan."

Ted Koppel // Photo by Steven Biver


Koppel also states, "It would be comforting to report that those agencies charged with responding to disaster are adequately prepared to deal with the consequences of a cyberattack on on the grid. They are not."

The head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, does not believe a city would have to be evacuated after it is crippled by a power outage which his deputy believes that it would be necessary, Koppel writes. 

The Energy Times recently interviewed Koppel about his book.

That interview will kickoff a webcast, The Grid Cyberthreat - Are We Prepared, February 3 from 2 - 3 pm ET, that will explore the government and industry response to the cyberthreat with top federal officials and industry leaders.

Participating in the webcast:

Caitlin A. Durkovich, Assistant Secretary for Infrastructure Protection  National Protection and Programs Directorate, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Patricia Hoffman, Assistant Secretary for Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, U.S. Department of Energy

Gerry Cauley,  President and CEO, North American Electric Reliability Corp.

Kevin Wailes, Vice Chair, Electric Subsector Coordinating Council, Lincoln Electric System administrator and chief executive officer

Edna M. Conway, Chief Security Officer, Global Value Chain, Cisco Systems, Inc. 

Register for the free conversation, sponsored by Cisco.


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