Cyber-Risk Management

Will hackers cause the next energy crisis?

Energy companies are suffering from an increasing and unprecedented number of cyberattacks.

The most alarming example so far: a malware attack in 2014 that compromised the operations of more than 1,000 energy companies in 84 countries, including the United States, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Turkey and Poland. This cyber campaign, reportedly waged as a means of industrial espionage, gave hackers the ability to cripple wind turbines, gas pipelines and power plants at the click of a mouse.

One reason is that the industrial control systems that support energy companies are no longer as sealed off from external threats. Electric utilities depend on automated controls to run their grids, which are managed through interconnected network systems. Oil and gas companies depend on data networks to manage facilities and to interpret seismic developments. Refiners, too, rely on data networks to manage meters and to analyze their customers’ needs.

What can be done?  Read our full article on the Oliver Wyman Ideas app.

Percent Increase in Insurance Coverage

  • 98%

    Increase in coverage for power and utilities

  • 42%

    Average increase among other sectors

Change in Coverage by Type

Security and privacy coverage+0%
Media coverage+14%
Regulatory defense coverage+0%
Business interruption coverage+3%
Information asset coverage+14%
Cyber extortion coverage14%

Cyber-risk management

Will hackers cause the next energy crisis?

Sandro Melis, Angelo Rosiello, Silvio Sparzani

Cyber-Risk Management