Skip to Content
Uncategorized

New Cyberattack Could Take Out Solar Arrays

August 8, 2017

Renewable energy may have a cybersecurity problem. At the recent BlackHat security conference, researchers found that it was possible to hack into the software that controls many wind farms, and potentially take the turbines hostage. Now it looks like solar panels are vulnerable, too.

According to the BBC, Dutch security researcher Willem Westerhof found a way to hack into inverters, which turn the direct current electricity produced by solar panels into alternating current that can be fed into the power grid.

Westerhof said that he found vulnerabilities in inverters made by several manufacturers. In a field test using inverters made by the German company SMA, he demonstrated that it's possible to remotely take control of the inverters. Westerhof reported the vulnerabilities he found to SMA—but did not publicly release his methods, for fear that they might be misused)—and the manufacturer issued a statement saying it was aware of the flaws and working to correct them. In theory, a malicious hacker that gained access to a solar array in this way could alter the flow of electricity in such a way as to cause an outage.

Deep Dive

Uncategorized

stock art of market data
stock art of market data

Maximize business value with data-driven strategies

Every organization is now collecting data, but few are truly data driven. Here are five ways data can transform your business.

Modern security demands an empathy-first approach to insiders

While attention is often focused on threats from outside the organization, employees too can pose a risk to security—even inadvertently.

image of library due date card on fire over black background
image of library due date card on fire over black background

The book ban movement has a chilling new tactic: harassing teachers on social media

Educators who stand up to conservative activists are being harassed and called “groomers” online, turning them into potential targets for real-world violence.

two images made by DALL-E 2
two images made by DALL-E 2

OpenAI is ready to sell DALL-E to its first million customers

But the company has had to rush out fixes to the image-making model’s worst flaws to do so.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose WongIllustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at customer-service@technologyreview.com with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.