Posting in Energy
The FBI has warned that smart grid hacking is losing energy companies millions every year.
The FBI has warned that smart grid hacking is losing energy companies millions every year.
Does it take sophisticated hacking in order to reduce an energy bill? Apparently not. Whereas old meters were known to be hacked by fiddling with the wiring, smart meters that are being more readily installed across the globe takes only a magnet or two.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has seen a surge in 'smart meter hacks' which allow consumers to cut expensive power bills from 50 to 75 percent -- providing they're careful about it.
It doesn't take knowing someone in the industry or power tools -- instead, consumers use a low-cost magnet to disrupt readings. Due to the digital nature of smart meters, there have also been cases of hackers being hired to cheat the system for a modest fee.
According to an FBI cyber intelligence bulletin posted on Krebs, this kind of fraud may end up costing utility companies approximately $400 million per year -- perhaps more as the smart meter rollout continues.
Magnet hacking is currently the most 'popular' method. Magnets are removed during daylight hours in case a technician appears to inspect the smart meter. In relation to this, the bulletin states:
"This method is being used by some customers to disable the meter at night when air-conditioning units are operational. The magnets are removed during working hours when the customer is not home, and the meter might be inspected by a technician from the power company."
Krebs says the notice was issued after research was completed in Puerto Rico that assessed these high estimations of cost due to consumer fraud. It is perhaps due to the ease of sabotaging a smart meter that the FBI are now involved; as the bulletin notes that:
"The FBI assesses with medium confidence that as Smart Grid use continues to spread [..] this type of fraud will also spread because of the ease of intrusion and the economic benefit to both the hacker and the electric customer."
With low-cost tools or software available online, anyone with limited knowledge of software and a strong desire to grab free electricity can compromise a smart meter system. Its security has been a cause for concern over several years, and for some, has been a catalyst for anti smart meter movements.
If it is easy for the average individual to hack, then privacy concerns are also an issue in terms of external, unauthorized parties accessing consumer data.
Image credit: Digitpedia
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There is a LARGE contingent of citizens in Texas working diligently to have these meters REMOVED from existing locations. These meters can (and DO) cause physical harm via the rf radiation that they emit. They have been installed without approval by the customers and without NOTICE. The exorbitant costs have been paid by the customers with no thought as to the consequences. This is only the first step towards TELLING you when and how you can use the electricity you are paying for. Like the oil refiners, the electric generating companies are seeking ways to reduce their overhead while raising their prices. Although wind generators are exploding across the nation, they are not keeping up with the power required by the illegal aliens moving in. There is ALWAYS a self-serving reason behind everything that a government controlled company does. Do not forget that the reason that we need more HUGE amounts of power is because the government does not pay the standard rate for their power so they waste it. The only companies that use so many lights are the Power Generators and the Government. These are left on all night every night while they admonish us to "Save Power". Texas can be readily discerned from space due in large part to the number of prisons and the outrageous number of sodium lights they employ.
It is a never ending batlle between all companies and people wanting their services for free. Back in the 70's I knew someone who worked for the power utility in Clearwater. He would turn his meter upside down during the weekend causing it to run backwards thus lowering his bill. One Sunday night he forgot to turn it rightside up. As luck would have it they read the meter the next day and cut his power! More than a little embarrassing. Newer technology just means newer means of cheating to some.
It must have been 30 years ago, when I saw this happen in a foreign country, where the homeowner turned a screw on the side of his meter, to shut it off during heavy electrical usage.
The link in the article to the source of the information displays an incomplete png of a report dated almost two years ago. Was it a slow news day? At the Krebson Security website, the article author cites "a cyber intelligence bulletin obtained by KrebsOnSecurity" (http://krebsonsecurity.com/2012/04/fbi-smart-meter-hacks-likely-to-spread/) then has the partial picture of an FBI document from 2010, but does not give any further support for it article. If indeed someone is just trying to stir up readership, I would have expected SmartPlanet to check sources before publication.
Funny thing... people who warned against such things ahving to do with Smart Meters were ridiculed as Luddites, old fogeys, or other impeders of progress.
Magnets are used to hack mechanical meters not smart meters. I used to design smart meters. There are ways to hack them, but if the utility uses some simple measures the hack can be detected.
As the technology grows with the required 'smart' processing detection should be integrated. Charging the FBI with processing a crime versus just the research will be valuable.
It's interesting that so many are so willing to sell their integrity out. I guess having a sense of integrity and feeling like an honest person and upstanding citizen aren't worth much in our "civilized" world. Reminds me of the question "Would you go thru a red light or stop sign if no one was around and you knew you wouldn't be caught?" As our "social" experiences and transactions become every less face to face via online avenues, it will be interesting (an perhaps costly) to see how people behave in terms of doing what works.
Strange, I live in Texas and have never heard of a large contingent of Texans trying to get them removed. And my electric service gave me notification of the new meters almost a year ago. They also provided documentation that states that the tin-hat crew that claim fr energy hazards is just BS, the signals are sent back over the line, not through the airwaves. As for a way to charge people more, I can say that's pretty much BS too. My provider (TVEC) is a co-op and I save hundreds of dollars a month on my bill compared to other electric providers in the area. Not to mention that you don't have to pay a meter person door to door to read the meters, which saves them labor dollars and fuel. As far as your quote about government controlled companies, I don't know of any government entity that owns or controls an electric company in the U.S. They are under government guidelines as to pricing and customer services, but they are not run by the government, they are privately owned unless they're a co-op like I use. The only thing that concerns me is their statement about privacy issues. They say "At this time there is no way for them to determine what your using your electricity on", which leaves "In the Future" wide open. They can never tell you what you use your electricity on as long as it's legal, but I would detest the idea that they could tell if your watching tv and such, that's a privacy issue. As far as the gov't wasting electricity, well I can honestly say that gov't buildings all have energy saving technology like automatic lights, and/or energy saving programs that are not only in place, but monitored. I worked for the federal gov't for over 20 years. Civilians are far more wasteful when it comes to electric use. Leaving all the lights on in the house, or not turning them off when leaving a room, leaving the tv on 24 hours a day whether it's being watched or not, taking those 15 to 20 minute hot showers, etc etc etc. One thing I can say about working for the gov't, I have been taught to be very conscious of energy savings and practice this every day. Everything from LED lights to only having the light on in the room that I'm using. Even in the hottest summers, my electric bill for my 4 bdrm home has always been under $200 a month, and that's with keeping it reasonably cool to cold inside. Everyone can drastically lower their electric bills if they would just take the time and effort to ensuring energy saving practices are used in their homes....
"Civilized World"? Just how civilized is it when those companies are DELIBERATELY overcharging with these Smart Meters? Apparently you are not aware of the physical damage that these meters do to your body, and especially those of children, JUST so that they can charge you whatever they want, whenever they want! As for running red lights and stop signs, I do it whenever there is no traffic. You are too young to know that those self-same 'laws' were once just there to establish responsibility after an accident, they were NOT there to force an ADULT to comply with a mindless sign/light. That was before YOUR automobile became a "motor vehicle" owned by the STATE and which required liability insurance for EACH MOTOR VEHICLE whereas before each "driver" was insured and could drive anything they wanted with only ONE POLICY. Guess who bought stock in the insurance companies and then re-wrote the 'laws' to make sure that they received MAXIMUM taxes from the people????? Don't believe me - CAFR1.com is where the truth lies. As an adult I am solely responsible for my actions and the local tax collectors (police) and their "rules" only have authority over the EMPLOYEES of the STATE, or, whoever contracts to obey those "rules" by APPLYING for a "driver's license". In Texas the law is very clear; the ONLY "Driver's License" in Texas is COMMERCIAL! Texas Transportation Code Article 521.001 The Certificate of Title ONLY applies to STATE owned vehicle. Texas Transportation Code Article 501.004 These are online at: www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us You, and all the other communist/democrat fools can find some other place to reside if you want the government to control your every breath. Adults do not need permission to live.
Your outrage is heathy. I suggest channeling all that energy into good things. Verbal attacks and name calling aren't among those good things. Be the change you wish to see...