There is a threat to oil and gas companies that seems to have been under the radar so far, and that threat is hackers. It is a problem that can effect oil and gas companies and also energy investment firms. Nicole Perlroth at the New York Times published an article earlier this year on the issue of Russian hackers that you can read here. The author indicates that Russian hackers have been “systematically targeting” hundreds of different oil and gas companies and investment firms in the West.
Ms. Perlroth quotes researchers in the cyber security field who say the motive for these Russian cyber attacks is industrial espionage, given Russia’s important domestic oil and gas industry. She refers to research by a number of computer security companies: CrowdStrike, Symantec and F-Secure, regarding the severity of the problem.
The damage so far pales compared to the potential damage. As the oil and gas industry turns more and more to digital solutions for exploration, drilling and production, they become increasingly vulnerable.