Army Of Weaponized “Cyber-Bots” Targeting Airports And Power Grids

Saturday, August 18, 2018
By Paul Martin
Aug. 18, 2018

The bad guys are mobilizing an army of weaponized cyber-bots that can turn every device in your home against you. Moreover, hackers and terrorists can transform anything connected to the internet or the cloud into a weapon.

These weaponized cyber-bots consist of sophisticated malware that radicals have designed to infiltrate and seize control of electronics. Disturbingly, the size, scope, and complexity of weaponized cyber-bots have grown enormously in recent months.

Andromeda Attacks With Weaponized Cyber-Bots

The Andromeda botnet, a legion of weaponized bots, was reportedly infecting one million devices a month. Frighteningly, Andromeda has attacked with 80 different families of malware, ZDNet reported.

Andromeda is hard to defend against because it attacks through a wide variety of channels. Known avenues of attack for Andromeda’s weaponized cyber-bots include email, spam, instant messages, and social media.

Shockingly, Andromeda is just one of dozens or even hundreds of botnets attacking America’s infrastructure. A botnet is a collection of malware that takes over computers and other devices. Once the botnet seizes control, it starts sending out malware apps known as bots to wreak havoc.

Weaponized Cyber-Bots Terrorize City And Airport

Weaponized cyber-bots held the city of Atlanta hostage on March 23, 2018. Specifically, a botnet encrypted data in the city’s computers, making them inaccessible.

The bots apparently deployed ransomware which demands money to release the data. Furthermore, the botnet apparently tried to seize control of key infrastructure including Hartsfield-Jackson International Atlanta Airport.

Authorities shut down Wi-Fi and other systems at the airport to keep weaponized cyber-bots out, reported. In addition, flight information and wait times were unavailable to passengers because of the attack.

“We don’t want to open up the airport to any possible cyberattack,” city spokesman Reese McCranie said. In fact, botnets can shut down crucial infrastructure without seizing total control.

Weaponized Cyber-Bots Targeting The Power Grid

Weaponized cyber-bots are currently targeting the power grid. Notably, the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority reported that it was attacked on March 19, 2018.

A nuclear power plant and U.S. energy companies have been targets in recent years, The Atlanta-Journal Constitution revealed. Experts have also considered that the U.S. power grid is a major target for cyberattack, the Council on Foreign Relations reported.

Suspected Russian hackers have developed a weaponized cyber-bot capable of taking down electric grids. The weapon, which people have called CrashOverride or Industroyer, is the first malware designed to attack electric grids, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“With a small amount of tailoring (CrashOverride) would also be effective in the North American grid,” the Dragos security firm warned. Dragos researchers believe CrashOverride shut off one-fifth of the electricity in Kiev, Ukraine, during December 2017.

“The malware is really easy to re-purpose and use against other targets,” ESET malware researcher Robert Lipovsky said. “That is definitely alarming. This could cause wide-scale damage to infrastructure systems that are vital.”

CrashOverride is apparently not powerful enough to take out a nation’s grid yet. Notwithstanding, the bad guys are undoubtedly hard at work on weaponized cyber-bots that can knock out an entire national grid.

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