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A security patrolman is believed to have hacked his way into computer networks at the Bradwell nuclear reactor in Essex near London and to have altered and deleted information, the Guardian Unlimited reported Tuesday.

According to documents leaked to the press, the incident, which was never voluntarily disclosed to the public by state-owned operator BNFL, occurred in 1999 and resulted in a lockdown of the entire plant to accommodate a security audit, the paper says.

Security at the plant was extremely lax according to the report. An un-named union official told the online paper that "lunatics, industrial spies or terrorists could have walked through the gates with a badge that almost anyone could get".

Thankfully, the incident has raised awareness throughout the industry, and a new programme of vetting security personnel is expected to be applied with some rigour in the very near future.

What a relief. ®

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