Cyber threat: Isro rules out Stuxnet attack on Insat-4 B

Cyber threat: Isro rules out Stuxnet attack on Insat-4 B
Cyber threat: Isro rules out Stuxnet attack on Insat-4 B

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12 Oct, 2010
Srinivas Laxman
The Economic Times

MUMBAI: Isro has ruled out possibility of the deadly Stuxnet internet 
worm attacking Insat-4 B satellite on July 7, resulting in 12 of its 24 
transponders shutting down.

Speaking to TOI from Bangalore on Monday, Isro officials, requesting 
anonymity, said that the worm only strikes a satellite=E2=80=99s programme logic 
controller (PLC).

=E2=80=9CWe can confirm that Insat-4 B doesn=E2=80=99t have a PLC. So the chances of the 
Stuxnet worm attacking it appear remote. In PLC=E2=80=99s place, Insat-4 B had 
its own indigenously-designed software which controlled the logic of the 
spacecraft,=E2=80=99=E2=80=99 said a source.

PLC=E2=80=99s main function is to control the entire =E2=80=9Clogic of the spacecraft=E2=80=99=E2=80=99. 
Other space experts described PLC as a digital computer used for 
automation of electro-mechanical processes.

Sources, however, said Isro is awaiting Jeffrey Carr=E2=80=99s presentation at 
Abu Dhabi next to know the full details of the Stuxnet internet worm. 
Carr in a blog published in Forbes recently suggested that the resumes 
of two former engineers at Isro=E2=80=99s Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre 
(LPSC) at Mahendra Giri in Tamil Nadu said that the Siemens S7-400 PLC 
was used in Insat-4 B, which can activate the Stuxnet worm.


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