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Israeli Power Grid Suffers ‘One Of The Largest Cyber Attacks’ In Its History

Israel’s energy minister confirmed his country experienced a massive cyber attack on its power grid Monday.

Yuval Steinitz, Israel’s minister of national infrastructure, energy and water resources, confirmed a “severe cyber attack” on Israel’s power grid Monday while speaking at a cyber security conference in Tel Aviv Tuesday. Steinitz claimed that the attack was being managed by his ministry in coordination with Israel’s National Cyber Bureau.

“The virus was already identified and the right software was already prepared to neutralize it,” Steinitz told the crowd. “We had to paralyze many of the computers of the Israeli Electricity Authority. We are handling the situation and I hope that soon, this very serious event will be over … but as of now, computer systems are still not working as they should.”

Israel is currently undergoing some of the coldest weather in recent memory, driving electrical demand to record levels.

A spokesperson for Israel’s electricity authority did not confirm who perpetrated the attack, but did tell Israeli newspaper Haaretz that “we are going to solve this problem in the coming hours.”

Israel’s cyber security capabilities are considered by some to be second only to that of the United States. Israel’s cyber security has been growing exponentially in recent years, with as much as $6 billion earned in exports in 2014, doubling the amount exported in 2013.

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