EPA Forms Task Force to Protect Water Systems from Cyber Attacks

Published On: March 21, 2024By Categories: Newsline

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced on March 19 that it is forming a Water Sector Cybersecurity Task Force to combat threats faced by water systems throughout the country.

Water systems are cyber-hacking targets to disrupt the economy at the local level. Three-quarters of the nation’s community water systems are groundwater-supplied.

The announcement was followed up by a virtual meeting on March 21 with the EPA and state representatives covering current federal and state efforts to promote cybersecurity practices in the water sector, discuss priority gaps in these efforts, and emphasize the need for states and water systems to take immediate action.

“Drinking water and wastewater systems are a lifeline for communities, but many systems have not adopted important cybersecurity practices to thwart potential cyberattacks,” EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan said. “The EPA and [the National Security Council] take these threats very seriously and will continue to partner with state environmental, health, and homeland security leaders to address the pervasive and challenging risk of cyberattacks on water systems.”

The task force will consider the prevalent vulnerabilities of water systems to cyberattacks and the challenges experienced by some systems in adopting best practices.

Click here to get information about the cybersecurity program at the EPA’s Cybersecurity for the Water Sector website.

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