IAEA says nuclear facilities must be protected against cyberattacks

Reports of actual or attempted cyberattacks on the nuclear industry occur almost daily, and it is vitally important that nuclear facilities are protected against these malicious intrusions, International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Director General Yukiya Amano said in opening remarks at the agency’s International Conference on Computer Security in a Nuclear World that began today in Vienna.

More than 650 participants from more than 100 member states and numerous organizations are attending the event, the first of its type held by the IAEA. The meeting is intended to provide a global forum for information exchange for relevant authorities, operators and others involved in computer security in the nuclear field.

Amano said the size of the group sends the important message that the international community is serious about protecting nuclear and other radioactive material – and associated activities and facilities – from malicious acts that are either computer–based or targeted at computers.

“Staff responsible for nuclear security should know how to repel cyber-attacks and to limit the damage if systems are actually penetrated,” Amano said. “The IAEA is doing what it can to help governments, organizations and individuals adapt to evolving technology-driven threats from skilled cyberadversaries.”

Conference partners include Interpol, the International Telecommunication Union, the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute, and the International Electrotechnical Commission.

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