Today we learn that the hacker tried to implement a much more sinister plan, namely to poison the water resources. Local and federal law enforcement are currently investigating the case and the circumstances of the remote seizure of control of a local water treatment plant. According to Reuters, the hacker probably obtained remote access to TeamViewer software on the computer of one of the employees of the facility in Oldsmar, Florida. He was very surprised when one day he saw on the desktop a window informing about unauthorized access, and a moment later a mouse cursor moving without his intervention and switching on other elements of system management.
Hackers thus gained access to software that controls the amount of sodium hydroxide, also known as lye, added to the city's water. This one is used to manage the acidity of the water, but any amount greater than a trace can be extremely corrosive and dangerous to human tissues - we often find it in oven cleaners, so if you've used them before, you know what's going on. The attacker wanted to increase its concentration from 100 parts per million to 11,100 parts per million!
As reported by the Tampa Bay Times, fortunately the person responsible for controlling all processes in the treatment plant immediately noticed these changes and canceled them, because the situation was really dangerous. Because although the mayor of the city, Eric Seidel, assured the residents that the facility has many security systems and even if he managed to complete the mission successfully, it would take more than a day for such "treated" water to reach the city's water resources. There is no reason not to take his word for it, but it seems that the hacker had gained access to such an important urban unit far too easily and could potentially pose a threat to a huge number of the city's inhabitants. So let's hope that all systems will be properly patched Life Hacker live the services will find a person responsible for this attack.