An Indian Nuclear Power Plant Suffered a Cyberattack. Here’s What You Need to Know.

Authorities don’t seem to understand the real threat from cyber-operations.

The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) has now confirmed that there was a cyberattack on the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP) in Tamil Nadu, India, in September. The nuclear power plant’s administrative network was breached in the attack, but did not cause any critical damage. KKNPP plant officials had initially denied suffering an attack and officially stated that KKNPP “and other Indian nuclear power plants are stand alone and not connected to outside cyber network and Internet. Any cyberattack on the Nuclear Power Plant Control System is not possible.”

So what really happened at Kudankulam? Here’s what you need to know.

1. The nuclear power plant and the cyberattack

The KKNPP is the biggest nuclear power plant in India, equipped with two Russian-designed and supplied VVER pressurized water reactors with a capacity of 1,000 megawatts each. Both reactor units feed India’s southern power grid. The plant is adding four more reactor units of the same capacity, making the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant one of the largest collaborations between India and Russia.


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