Colonial Pipeline Cyber Attack Exposes Critical Infrastructure Vulnerability

The Colonial Pipeline runs from Texas to New Jersey and transports 45 percent of the East Coast’s fuel supply.

Until… Cyber Attack – Largest Assault on US Energy Infrastructure in History

The U.S. East Coast is losing around 1.2 million barrels a day of gasoline supply due to the shut down resulting from cyber attack.

Gas station pumps are running dry on day five of the Colonial Pipeline cyber attack.

Cars are lining up outside gas stations in parts of the east coast and across the South. Gas shortages are popping up all over the place…

Many gas stations from Florida to Virginia have closed their pumps.

Evidently the fuel crisis is so bad in North Carolina, their governor has declared a state of emergency.

Oh, and, the pipeline also serves Atlanta’s airport – the world’s busiest by passengers. Whoops…

Oh, and, the pipeline also serves 90 U.S. military installations and 26 oil refineries.

Panic Buying

“The real panic has yet to begin as millions of Americans are waking up for work, hopping into their vehicle across the Southeast, and are hearing fuel shortages on the radio or reading push notifications on their phone. Driving down the street, they see rising fuel prices, signs at pumps that either read shortage or pump restrictions, or even see some gas stations closed.” 

~ zerohedge

I think that most of us know what happens when people notice shortages. Panic buying. And this gas shortage is no different…

Colonial said it was working to ‘substantially’ resume operations by the end of this week. ‘Substantially’, whatever that means…

Critical Infrastructure – Juicy Targets For Cyber Attacks

This is a perfect example of the many systemic risks that I sometimes write about. You’ve never heard of the Colonial Pipeline before. No one knew that this one pipeline supplies 45% of the East Coast fuel supply. At least no one knew until this cyber attack…

For your interest, here’s a map of gas pipelines across the United States:

Gas Transmission and Hazardous Liquid Pipelines

Normalcy bias. Everything’s humming along smoothly. Not a thought in the world about how it all happens. It’s just magic. There’s always gas at the gas station. Duh… Right?

Hackers are increasingly attempting to infiltrate essential services and critical infrastructure.

How many times have we talked about the electrical grid here? (for example)

As preparedness-minded individuals, we need to be aware of the many underlying systemic risks to our modern way of life. Although most of us are vulnerable to these risks (because they’re integrated into our daily lives), awareness can make some difference. Motivation for some extent of mitigation.

[ Read: How To Fix New Gas Cans So They Actually Pour Right ]

[ Read: The complicated web of reliance that we have on sources of energy to keep the system going – and the systemic risks that are certainly built-in ]

UPDATE: Um, hopefully this is not your neighbor! It never ceases to amaze me how absolutely DUMB so many people are!! Here’s a “gas hoarding” photo. Someone with gasoline in plastic bags in their trunk! Complete lunacy.

When people get desperate they stop thinking clearly. Or perhaps never could think clearly at all…

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52 Comments

  1. Most people dont even think at all about extra fuel, its just not on the list of day to day stuff.

  2. Most people haven’t learned a lesson in being prepared over the past year because the government stepped in and provided them food, housing, a paycheck, told them what to think, what to do and how to respond. The real fun will begin when the government can’t provide and the idiots are left on their own.

  3. Was this not also the same Pipeline that ruptured a few years back?

    Anyways, do a search on the number of Cyber Hits the Grid takes each day, Also do a little research on the number of times the “Accounting” side of the Electrical Grids that has actually been hacked into.

    As far as the Fuel Supply heading out of TX to the NE, seems a little like when your buddy Biden shut down the Keystone Pipeline don’t it? Think about it.

    Follow the Money, who is going to make $Billions trucking that fuel to the NE?
    Conspiracy Theory or Fact? Tis a very fine line these days is it not?

    1. NRP,,,, strange things. ,, we have hundreds of rail tank cars in storage near here ,,on Wednesday the 5th a number of cars were being taken out of long term storage ,these are part of one hundred car unit trains ,seemed strange all the hurry up and activities ,i supposed just coincides that the pipe line went down on the7th ,,obtw thats Warren Buffett’s rail road ,didn’t RAND say there no coincides in nature ,,hum ,move along nothing to see here,,

      1. Ted,

        Astute observation…..but sorta like saying closing down dairy farms is a separate issue from processed milk getting to the store.

        1. I agree that shutting down keystone was moronic horse by product but all the crude being produced in Canada is getting to market today without keystone. Keystone is a cheaper more efficient way to get that crude to market (with less environmental cost). At 60$+ WTI today it is hard to make the second order argument that some large amount of additional Canadian reserves would be developed if keystone existed. The idea that modestly higher transportation costs are surpressing product isn’t in the market.

  4. They had a fire and explosion on the line at a tank farm in Pelham, Alabama a few years ago. Looks fishy to me. Gates and other big fish have invested OTR and rail transport.

    1. You can’t switch from pipe to OTR/rail overnight the infrastructure doesn’t exist to handle 1.2 million bbls/day.

  5. This is the same pipeline that went down several years ago due to a line rupture, or leak
    I was visiting friends in western N.C.
    It was a mess.

  6. It could also be a distraction from the stimulus inflation and the border disaster. I guess we’ll see what other manmade wonders are on tap soon. Pray for leadership and your children. It’s intuitively obvious to the most casual observer that the leadership of this country has been decapitated.

  7. Here, a lot of stations are closed. If they’re open the lines are around the block. My vehicle tanks are full as well as my gas cans. They usually stay that way…
    luv ya’ll, Beach’n

  8. i have said it before and i’ll say it again.
    as long as our infrastructure is tied to the internet, expect this kind of thing to happen more often by criminals like in this attack to hold the country hostage for money, or foreign country’s trying to interfere.
    until the government and supply/infrastructure systems disconnect from the internet we will always be held with a knife to our throats.
    just think about the nuclear power plants across our country. its a scary thought.
    just a few keystrokes is all it takes, this proof of that

    1. Online banking?? Never. Online bill paying? Never.
      All my utilities and credit card are paid by old fashion check. If I want to see if my SS has been deposited–I have to use the debit card.
      Inconvenient?? Well, let’s wait a few years and see who is inconvenienced!!

      Oh, a real estate dude today told me to get a lawyer–VA can NOT decline me widow’s pension if G was drawing disability for 8 years because of agent orange damage to his body.

  9. Doesn’t make much of a dent on oil prices. Oil was up to $66 before the cyber attack came and has fluctuated between $63.75 and $65.23 since then. It is predictable what happens when there are shortages. It is predictable of a cyber attack on our energy resources. There are too many people who are unteachable to prepare, so they will always be caught being idiots.

    I only used half a tank this year, I mail ordered most my needs online and saved money on prices with free shipping but would cost me more with gas and paying higher prices at the stores.

  10. The internet; never in HISTORY has the world been tied to a single point of failure like this! ‘Just sayin’…

  11. We have a Shell station a few miles down the road from our farm. Since Saturday, every time one of us drives by it , there are cars lined up to fill up.

    The third step in a Communist revolution involves chaos. When “things” get too bad the gen/pop pleads for help and the Tanks roll, the Army is in the streets, and Martial Law is declared (forever).

    Why let out violent Felons from jail? Why spend into hyperinflation? Why allow BLM/Antifa to step up their “Peaceful Protests? Why send checks to people so that they will not go back to work? Why continue Lockdowns?

    THE WANT CHAOS!

      1. Kulafarmer,

        Exactly. And Michigan’s gov. Whitmer just ordered an Enbridge pipeline shut down in her state. ‘Ticking time bomb’ she calls it.—Very curious timing. Yup. Keeping up the pressure, taking away the things. I really wonder about the whole cyber attack story.

        1. Clarifying – the deadline for the Enbridge pipeline to shut down is tomorrow. Evidently, she ordered it some months prior. I’m not sure this will have a big impact in the US, like the Colonial pipeline is having. Most of the product from it is heading in to Canada.

          1. Farmgirl,
            I read that this weekend as well. And I also understood it to be from US to canada. But it makes me wonder what will spiral out of control from this dumb move. She is a peach of a gov… 🙄 and her clan of other dumb leadership in the state.

  12. Sunday 7 a.m., filled the truck, filled three 20 lb propane tanks (was a tick complacent having three of a bunch empty), good with fuel oil, spare gas all set.Have not wandered out since, no need. Just messing around readying for planting, swatting black flies.

  13. We have noticed it in our small town for the past 2 weeks. Only one gas station has gas, sometimes. We make sure and have our tanks full. Staying close to home.

  14. Wish I could call it a black swan event but can’t. A cyber attack was talked about in the early 80s although I don’t think the term cyber attack was in common use. All critical systems should have a hard break from the net. No access at all! No cost and common sense but someone didn’t want to be inconvenienced.

    Luckily our area of the deep south is not supplied by the pipeline but people are panic buying anyway. Typical.

    Anyway it appears time is short to complete any preps. Good Luck to all, we will need it.

  15. Skimmed thru an article today speculating on the cyberattack.
    Could be true, although the author(s) seek credibility….at times.
    My jist of the article:
    The central banks causing higher prices to cover our ever declining economy cover up.
    Higher fuel prices, which go to higher transportation of everyday commodities.
    Food, everyday materials, etc
    And of course, they are blaming Russia involvement.

    And as someone posted, these owned rail lines will benifit from this.
    Screw the consumer, while the big cohorts make the profit, off a (planned) series of downfalls.

    We’re are in the good hands of TPTB.
    (Sarc)

    Armor up. The train will derail…..at any given time……
    You and me will be the hardest hit. Count on it.

  16. S. Carolina and Virginia have declared state of emergency over gas disruption…..over 1000 stations out of gas…
    ….Biden’s energy secretary….”we don’t have any shortages”………….

  17. It case nobody has mentioned it….no gas, no diesel, …no deliveries….empty shelves….no jet fuel to airports…….

    ….”.Golly gee Wally ….you don’t think this was timed to happen just when all those governors are letting people go back to work do you?”……

    “Nah, Beav….it’s just coincidence…..”

  18. If there is a gas shortage, why don’t we have a regional campaign encouraging those in the east to eat more beans. Or, put bags on the hind ends of cows to capture their gas. Problem solved. Maybe I’m confusing the problem with a different gas?

  19. Am I being optomestic or are Banks going to put their foot down by taking more responsibilities for their jobs. Online is a method. Banks will one day agree that they are protecting jobs here. And, their livelihood.

  20. BIDEN’S 2 Trillion dollar INFRASTRUCTURE
    Bill is a total SHAM less then 9% of that monies go to repairing our failing infrastructure the other 91% goes to the Democratic favorite project of fixing things like ARE YOU ABOY OR ARE YOU A GIRL and paying BLACK Americans because their great great grandparents were slaves. They also want to spend more money on teaching our children to HATE AMERICA and Teach them to be socialist and communist FAILURES!!!

  21. I live in eastern N.C. and the stations in my town and surrounding town have been empty since yesterday morning. There is no gas anywhere to be found. People are freaking out and doing some crazy things already…I work on a Marine Corps Base and many of the services on the base are teleworking for at least the rest of the week. CRAZY

  22. Are you freaking kidding me? It never ceases to amaze me how absolutely DUMB so many people are! You’ve got to look at the photo that I just added to the end of the article above…

    1. Ken,

      They say a picture says a thousand words…..being a highly trained observer, I’d bet…..A) they vote democrat B) they are scared sh-tless of guns C) they have “save the animals” bumper sticker D) don’t have a clue what you are talking about when you mention the similarity to a piss bomb…….

    2. Holy crap!
      Surely the genius who came up with this brilliant idea is a Darwin Award finalist. Unbelievable.

    3. Ken,
      Um…looks like a photo from a BLM/Antifa rally preparation manual. Ya just can’t make this stuff up! Would love to follow this guy (about a block or two behind) and watch what happens when he has to come to a sudden stop. I personally hate handling large quantities of gasoline, would much rather handle an equal volume of explosives…..at least I know what to expect out of them.

      1. Minerjim
        LOL,-one good speed bump or pothole and they will be getting it out of the trunk with sponge. HaHa
        i hope their smoking their crack pipe when the do

    4. Ken, I would suggest they buy a lottery ticket if they made it home in one piece. It was their lucky day.
      The crazy part is that others probably thought it was a good idea! Worse yet is that because they didn’t die in horrific fireball they will continue doing it…until BOOM!!

  23. Dennis
    you are absolutely spot on.
    sheeple, ya wan’t to laugh at them if it wasn’t so sad. these are the same folks who will be starving 3 days after an “event”. they live from hand to mouth day to day, paycheck to paycheck with no thought of tomorrow and will wonder why, what happened.
    oh well, more for us after.
    i try and spread the word, but it mostly falls on deaf ears.
    beans, bullets and bandages, and oh yea, lots of water

  24. Colonial Pipeline Co. paid nearly $5 million to Eastern European hackers on Friday, contradicting reports earlier this week that the company had no intention of paying an extortion fee to help restore the country’s largest fuel pipeline, according to two people familiar with the transaction.

    The company paid the hefty ransom in difficult-to-trace cryptocurrency within hours after the attack, underscoring the immense pressure faced by the Georgia-based operator to get gasoline and jet fuel flowing again to major cities along the Eastern Seaboard, those people said. A third person familiar with the situation said U.S. government officials are aware that Colonial made the payment.
    Bloomberg news.
    expect more of this to happen.

    1. So, they paid the hackers last week, but are still relying on their own backups to restore the system? Sounds like money poorly spent.

      1. Looks like they got a decryption key in return, which is working so slowly that they went back to using their backups.

  25. BY NOW WE HAVE LEARN THE TRUTH …AND THAT IS 5 million dollars was paid with the full knowledge and approval from BIDEN and there will be a wave of Hackers attacks coming…attacking our entire infrastructure…banking, electrical, water and sewer, natural gas, and our entire on time supply line!!! It will be WW3 and not even one shot will be fired and we will probably be the loser!!! I love technology but it will destroy us in the end if don’t learn quickly how to control it with safeguards!!! Just like in the movie
    TERMINATOR where SKYNET takes over… SyFy is not fiction …only a look into the FUTURE!!!
    NOTE YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!

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