Cybercom sounds alarm on infrastructure attacks

The commander of the U.S. Cyber Command warned Congress this week that Russia and China now can launch crippling cyberattacks on the electric grid and other critical infrastructures.

“We remain vigilant in preparing for future threats, as cyberattacks could cause catastrophic damage to portions of our power grid, communications networks and vital services,” Adm. Mike Rogers, the Cyber Command chief, told a Senate hearing. “Damaging attacks have already occurred in Europe,” he stated, noting suspected Russian cyberattacks that temporarily turned out the lights in portions of Ukraine.

Adm. Rogers said that unlike other areas of military competition, Russia is equal to the United States in terms its cyberwarfare capabilities, with China a close second.

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