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S. Korea says nuclear reactors safe after cyber-attacks
by Staff Writers
Seoul (AFP) Dec 25, 2014

Hacker Threatens to Publish 100,000 Pages on SKorean Nuke Reactors
Moscow, Russia (Sputnik) Dec 24, 2014 -A hacker in possession of South Korean nuclear reactor blueprints has posted internal company information about the facilities, warning that more material could follow if Seoul does not close several reactors before Christmas, Yonhap News Agency reported Sunday.

"I can open to the world 100,000 pages of data that have not yet been revealed," the hacker's tweet was quoted as saying by the agency.

The hacker has revealed data concerning the Gori-2 and Wolsong-1 nuclear reactors on his Twitter account called "president of anti-nuclear reactor group", according to the agency.

The data was reportedly leaked from South Korea's state-run Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power (KHNP) company and concerns the reactors' air conditioning and cooling systems. The hacker threatened to publish all the information that he had on the nuclear facilities if the reactors were not shut down by Christmas.

"You say this isn't confidential material. Let's see if you will take responsibility if the information on blueprints, systems and programs are all disclosed to the countries that want them," the hacker wrote in another tweet.

According to Yonhap, the latest publication of the KHNP materials is the fourth one since December 15. On December 19, the hacker demanded closing three other reactors for three months.

KHNP said that the information the hacker had did not pertain to the core technologies and did not pose a threat to the security of the reactors. KHNP operates 23 nuclear power reactors, providing 30 percent of South Korea's overall power supply, according to the company's website.

South Korea on Thursday ruled out the possibility that a recent string of cyber-attacks on its nuclear power operator could cause a malfunction at any of the country's 23 atomic reactors.

The designs and manuals for two reactors have been published on Twitter over the past week, along with personal information on some 10,000 workers at Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power (KHNP).

Officials said Tuesday that South Korea has heightened security in the wake of the leaks, with the defence ministry's cyber warfare unit increasing its watch-level against attacks from North Korean and other hackers.

The presidential Blue House moved Thursday to allay concerns that hackers could cause a malfunction at one of the nation's nuclear plants by breaking into its system.

"The control system of nuclear reactors are separated from external networks, and hacking into the system is fundamentally impossible," the presidential office said in a statement quoted by Yonhap news agency.

KHNP has said the material released on the Gori and Wolsong nuclear power plants was not classified and would not affect safety.

The hacker has styled himself as the president of an anti-nuclear power activist group and threatened to release more information unless the government shuts down three reactors from December 25.

Investigators said Wednesday that the suspect had used multiple Internet protocol (IP) addresses based in China, though this is not always a reliable guide to the geographical location of an Internet user.

Officials have not ruled out the possible involvement of Pyongyang, which Seoul has blamed for a slew of cyber-attacks on South Korean military institutions, banks, government agencies, TV broadcasters and media websites.

But there has been no indication so far that the North was behind the release of the nuclear material.

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