"Israel is currently experiencing one of the most severe cyber-attack on the Israel National Electricity Authority. We discovered it yesterday; fortunately, The Ministry of National Infrastructures, Energy and Water Resources and the Israel National Cyber Bureau are already handling it," said Dr. Yuval Steinitz, Minister of National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Resources at the third international Cybertech Conference in Tel Aviv Tuesday.
The minister began his speech with the dramatic statement, and informed the audience of the steps being taken to counter the attack:
"We had to paralyze many of the computers of the Israeli electricity authorities," he said. "We are handling the situation and I hope that soon, this very serious event will be over. This is a fresh example of the sensitivity of infrastructure to cyber-attacks, and the importance of preparing ourselves in order to defend ourselves against such attacks."
The minister went on to underscore the importance of defensive cyber technology: "We need cybertech to prevent such attacks. Cyber-attacks on infrastructure can paralyze power stations and the whole energy supply chain from natural gas, oil, petrol to water systems and can additionally cause fatalities. Terrorists' organizations such as Daesh [ISIS], Hezbollah, Hamas and Al Qaeda have realized that they can cause enormous damage by using cyber to attack nations.
"Cyber-attacks are a great threat and I am certain that they will become a major threat in the next decade. Israel has some experience in handling such cyber-attacks and Israel will be able to share those experiences and technologies with other states," he stated.
Steinitz was addressing the audience at the closing plenary of the first day of the Cybertech conference, the world's second largest exhibition of cyber technologies and the most significant conference and exhibition of cyber technologies outside of the United States.