"Hackers have made the energy industry a favorite target.
A study conducted in April by Symantec Corp., the world’s biggest cybersecurity firm, found that computer-system invaders attacked 43 percent of global mining, oil and gas companies at least once last year. In a separate survey the same month, conducted for the Organization of American States by another security company, Trend Micro Inc., 47 percent of energy organizations reported attacks, the highest among all corporate sectors and surpassed only by governments.
'Nowadays you have computers running everything,' said Alvaro Cardenas, a computer-science professor at the University of Texas at Dallas and a member of the Cyber Security Research and Education Institute. 'You can create blackouts or oil spills and hurt a lot of people.'"