Biden administration says Colonial Pipeline is restarting after cyberattack

·2 min read
<p>The Colonial Pipeline, which was hit by a cyberattack last week, is restarting operations</p> (AFP via Getty Images)

The Colonial Pipeline, which was hit by a cyberattack last week, is restarting operations

(AFP via Getty Images)

The Colonial Pipeline, which had been disabled for the past week by a cyberattack, is restarting operations, US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm announced on Wednesday.

On its website, Colonial confirmed that the pipeline was restarting.

“Colonial Pipeline initiated the restart of pipeline operations today at approximately 5 p.m. ET,” the company said in a statement. “As we initiate our return to service, our primary focus remains safety. As part of this startup process, Colonial will conduct a comprehensive series of pipeline safety assessments in compliance with all Federal pipeline safety requirements.”

The pipeline, which transports fuel from Texas to New Jersey and many states in between, had been shut down since Friday due to a ransomware attack. The FBI has said a Russian criminal group called DarkSide was responsible.

The cyberattack had sent gas prices soaring in several states, including a jump by 24 cents per gallon in Georgia and 18 cents per gallon in South Carolina.

As the pipeline goes back online, Colonial warned customers that things will take a while to fully stabilize.

“Following this restart, it will take several days for the product delivery supply chain to return to normal,” the company said. “Some markets served by Colonial Pipeline may experience, or continue to experience, intermittent service interruptions during the start-up period.”

Colonial also thanked the Biden administration for its help.

“We would also like to thank the White House for their leadership and collaboration,” the statement added, “as well as the Department of Energy, Department of Transportation, FBI, PHMSA, FERC and other federal, state and local agencies for their ongoing support.”

The Colonial sabotage was the worst cyberattack to date against United States infrastructure. Experts say it underscores serious vulnerabilities in the US, whose non-defence infrastructure is mostly owned by private companies.

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