Last two weeks’ Friday saw the happening of a very strange event that led to queues piling up in gas stations across the US. The Colonial Pipeline company’s computer system was hacked by a group known as ‘Darkside’ believed to be in eastern Europe. This caused the pipeline company to shut off some part of the system for about 5 days in order to isolate the threat. Eventually, a sum of about $5 million, actually 75 Bitcoin was paid as a ransom to make the system wholesome once again.
A lot of people were shocked and in a thousand years would never have thought an event such as this could happen as most city’s gas stations ran out of gas and the few available shot up prices averaging $3 per gallon – an all-time high since 2014. The high prices were attributable more to panic buying engaged in by the people than the cyberattack itself. East coast cities were the most affected as the pipelines accounts for 45% of their gas supplies
The hack had a contribution from the change in the pipeline operations which was started to be managed remotely using the internet when the pandemic raged. It formerly used to be operated in a closed manner by workers on-site delivering more than 100 million gallons of gas daily via its 5500 miles of pipeline in 14 states across the US.
The Pipeline system was eventually restarted last Wednesday around 5:00pm in a gradual process that will take days before full restoration. The pipeline company also warned in a release that “Some markets served by Colonial Pipeline may experience, or continue to experience, intermittent service interruptions during the start-up period”
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