Smart-Meter Hacker to Give Talk He Shelved Under Industry Pressure
ew things are as scandalous at computer-hacker conferences as the presentations that don’t happen.
Hackers face constant legal threats for their discoveries. So when someone plans to disclose an important security hole, but is forced to cancel the talk because of legal pressure, the episode is almost always mythologized. It’s remembered as another skirmish between “white hat” hackers who are trying to make technology safer, and companies and governments that want to protect their parochial interests.
On Wednesday, a security expert who has been investigating problems with smart power meters will get to explain his research that was abruptly shelved in January. Don Weber, with security consultancy InGuardians, has developed software called OptiGuard that helps identify weaknesses in smart meters via their optical ports. It looks for ways that the data on the meters might be stolen by an attacker, or whether the devices can remotely be turned off by unauthorized users.