Chinese break into US dam database

Chinese hackers have cracked a US Army database that contains information about the vulnerabilities of thousands of US dams.

The database belonged to the US Army Corps of Engineers’ National Inventory of Dams (NID) and could help China carry out a cyber attack on the national electrical power grid.

Of course it is unlikely to do this. After all most of the Chinese economy depends on selling gear to America that need electricity so it would not make much sense to turn off the power supply. However while most US companies are manufacturing in China the US is paranoid about spying from behind the bamboo curtain.

Nevertheless, according to IB Times there will be a lot of questions about how a sensitive site could be bought down by hackers.

Pete Pierce, a spokesperson from the Corps of Engineers, confirmed the attack happened but was not saying how or why.

He said that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers knew that a hacker gained access to the National Inventory of Dams (NID), to include sensitive fields of information not generally available to the public on January 2013.

The user didn’t have the proper level of access for the information.

Access was immediately blocked once discovered, and the NID is beefing up security to the database.

The NID has information about 8,100 major dams in the US. The fear is that hackers could access the systems that control a dam’s turbine generators.