May 9, 2012 | Quote

Risk of Cyberattacks Clouds Natural Gas Boom

“The natural gas sector would be the obvious place for enemies of the United States to target just because of the [industry’s] enormous economic potential,” said Mark Dubowitz, executive director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies. Recent natural gas discoveries “have really positioned the United States as an energy superpower,” he added — increasing the incentive for hostile nations or nonstate groups like Al Qaeda “to target this growing wealth.”

Dubowitz pointed to last month’s cyberattack against the Iranian oil industry and the tensions between the U.S. and Iran as evidence of the mounting threat.

“This is going to come sooner rather than later, especially as things get hotter on the Iranian front,” Dubowitz said. “We have to expect that we will be entering a whole new stage of warfare, whatever we employ will be employed against us. And now is the time to ensure that our defensive capabilities are as effective as our offensive capabilities.”

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