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New York Times by Joseph Berger

Bowman Dam, Rye New York - Photo Courtesy - City of Rye.

Bowman Dam, Rye New York – Photo Courtesy – City of Rye.

The United States has many colossal dams, hydroelectric power generators like Hoover and Grand Coulee so monumental in scale and purpose that they have been celebrated in song by Woody Guthrie and others.

The Bowman Avenue Dam in this low-key suburban village in Westchester County is not one of those. Its opening is about the width of a modest living room, and the 20-foot-tall dam itself essentially keeps a babbling creek, the Blind Brook, from flooding basements and ground floors in houses downstream.

Yet, according to the authorities, it was the computer-guided controls of this dam that seven Iranian computer hackers chose to penetrate on behalf of that country’s Revolutionary Guards Corps, as part of a plot that also breached or paralyzed 46 of the nation’s largest financial institutions and blocked hundreds of thousands of customers from accessing their bank accounts online. The cyberattacks were disclosed in an indictment that Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch announced on Thursday.

“It’s ridiculous how little that dam is, how insignificant in the grand scheme of things,” said Paul Rosenberg, the village’s mayor. “We’re not talking about something vital to the infrastructure of the country.”

The mayor, despite being puzzled by Rye Brook’s role in the alleged plot, had several theories about why the village’s sluice-gate dam had been singled out. One was that the Iranian hackers had confused the structure with another named Bowman — the Arthur R. Bowman Dam on the Crooked River in Oregon, which is 245 feet tall and 800 feet long, and is used to irrigate a large swath of local farms[…]

How about a test run for something bigger? In the meantime, Attorney General, Loretta Lynch, FBI’s James Comey among others spin.

Like I said, a test run for something bigger. As far as “holding bad actors accountable,” the AG might want to look within.

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