Feeds

Electrical supe charged with damaging California canal system

Facing 10 years

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

A former employee for a federally-owned canal system in California was charged with installing software that damaged a computer used to divert water out of a local river.

Michael Keehn, of Willows, California, faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Federal court documents claim the former electrical supervisor with the Tehama Colusa Canal Authority "intentionally caused damage without authorization to a protected computer."

The TCCA operates two canals that move water out of the Sacramento River for using in irrigation and agriculture in Northern California. As part of its duties, the TCCA uses a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system to regulate the system.

Attempts to reach Keehn for comment were not successful. A report found here quoted Keehn as saying "I'm sure I did something to cause it" but that he wasn't entirely sure. Keehn worked for the TCCA for more than 17 years before being fired on August 15, the date he is alleged to have installed the unauthorized software.

The security of SCADA systems has emerged as a sensitive issue in the post 9-11 world. In 2000, a disgruntled former employee for a water system in Australia used a SCADA system to spill raw sewage into waterways, hotel grounds and canals in the area, according to this article from ComputerWorld. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
George Clooney, WikiLeaks' lawyer wife hand out burner phones to wedding guests
Day 4: 'News'-papers STILL rammed with Clooney nuptials
Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods
Not just web servers under threat - though TENS of THOUSANDS have been hit
Apple's new iPhone 6 vulnerable to last year's TouchID fingerprint hack
But unsophisticated thieves need not attempt this trick
PEAK IPV4? Global IPv6 traffic is growing, DDoS dying, says Akamai
First time the cache network has seen drop in use of 32-bit-wide IP addresses
Oracle SHELLSHOCKER - data titan lists unpatchables
Database kingpin lists 32 products that can't be patched (yet) as GNU fixes second vuln
Researchers tell black hats: 'YOU'RE SOOO PREDICTABLE'
Want to register that domain? We're way ahead of you.
Stunned by Shellshock Bash bug? Patch all you can – or be punished
UK data watchdog rolls up its sleeves, polishes truncheon
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.