China represents an rising risk to the US energy grid, lawmakers had been instructed Tuesday throughout a listening to during which they had been warned a cyberattack from the nation might plunge army and different delicate websites into darkness.
“The Chinese language actions are fairly alarming,” mentioned Manny Cancel, senior vp of the North American Electrical Reliability Corp., throughout testimony earlier than a US Home subcommittee. “Chinese language cyber actions are one of the vital dynamic cyber threats. China continues to reveal rising sophistication, together with new and adaptive strategies to achieve entry to networks.”
The listening to, held by the Home Power and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, comes because the nation’s energy grid grows more and more susceptible to cyberattacks, whereas incidents reminiscent of bodily assaults and vandalism elevated some 77% in 2022, based on the committee.
China is “virtually definitely succesful” of launching cyberattacks that will disrupt essential infrastructure providers throughout the US, together with oil and fuel pipelines and rail techniques, based on a report revealed earlier this 12 months by the Workplace of the Director of Nationwide Intelligence.
The listening to comes amid rising tensions with China, together with reviews final week that Chinese language hackers breached e-mail accounts of US officers from the State Division, in addition to US Commerce Division Secretary Gina Raimondo.
“Think about what is feasible if the CCP assaults our grid,” mentioned Consultant Cathy McMorris Rodgers, a Washington Republican who chairs the complete committee.
Chinese language International Ministry spokeswoman Mao Ning repeated Beijing’s line that it’s a sufferer of hacking, and in addition accused the US of “large-scale and indiscriminate cyberattacks on many international locations.”
“We don’t suppose the US ought to hit out at China for political functions,” she mentioned Wednesday at an everyday press briefing in Beijing.