It appears that Anonymous may pose more of a threat to the U.S. government than initially thought.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting General Keith Alexander, director of the NSA, has said that Anonymous may be capable of taking down power grids via a cyberattack in the next few years.
The statements were reportedly made in meetings at the White House and other private gatherings according to sources. Gen. Alexander has previously warned on the threat cyberattacks pose to computer networks by being able to disable them.
We reported last week on Operation Global Blackout, an Anonymous plot to take down the entire Internet as an act of protest. Experts speaking to the WSJ said that an attack on that scale would be unlikely, but it does show that Anonymous may be preparing for larger attacks.
It would appear that Anonymous doesn’t have the ability to take power grids via cyerbattacks yet. Intelligence officials claim that the only powers that have that capability would be China or Russia. There is still some concern, however, of Anonymous’ ability to develop a way to take down power grids in the near future.
What’s far more interesting is the alleged belief by some officials that a hostile country could give cyberattack tools to a group like Anonymous. This would allow Anonymous to carry out the attack and remove all responsibility from the offending country.
These rumored meetings come on the tail of Senator John McCain announcing a new cybersecurity bill that would put the NSA in charge of monitoring the net for cyberattacks. It seems that the McCain and Alexander have a vested interest in putting the military in charge of the policing the Internet.
McCain plans to present the bill after Congress gets back from its Presidents Day recess.