The cyber threat world is dark and gloom; it’s cruel, we pretty much know that. But could it become deadly and murderous, that’s something that none of us could have ever seen coming—not even in our scariest dreams.
Triton, dubbed the “most dangerous” malware to have been developed to date, is spreading worldwide. And at its target are the humans…
The Cyber Threat World Just Turned Into a Bloodbath!
In the summer of 2017, at a petrochemical plant in Saudi Arabia, the plant operations were suddenly brought to a halt in response to a safety system trigger. The management ignored the incident as a mechanical glitch in the system. Then, a couple of months later, the same thing happened again, but this time there were several more systems that tripped.
The company called in a team of investigators to get to the bottom of the unexplained happenings at the plant. What they learnt, made their blood run cold.
There was a malware that was interrupting with the operations of the plant’s safety instrumented systems; these systems acted as the last line of defence against life-threatening disasters such as a potential gas leak or a boiler explosion. The malware made it possible to control the safety instrumented systems remotely.
Fortunately, there was a flaw in the code of the malware which stopped the intruders from causing any catastrophic event. History came this close to recording a mass-scale murderous event at the hands of a “malware”.
The malware was named Triton, for it targeted the Triconex safety controller model, which is made by a French company, Schneider Electric.
Fast forward to September 2019, and Triton is once again on the hunt. This time, it’s targeting a broader range of safety controllers and places outside the Middle East. Experts claim that the group that built the malware has created new strains of it, and these strains are more robust and versatile than the previous “flawed” code.
Who is actually behind Triton is still an unanswered question. However, there is a common consensus that it has been developed by a state. How true is this assumption—as that is what we’d like to call it for now—remains to be seen, but it’s quite clear that we now have a malware lurking around, designed to hurt humans.
The cyber threat world just got darker beyond our worst imagination.
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