Colonial Pipeline Ransom: Companies Pass Their Mistakes on to the Rest of Us

The ransomware attack on the Colonial Pipeline cut off nearly half the supply of gasoline and jet fuel to much of the East Coast. Oil companies had already started jacking up gas prices in anticipation of people traveling this summer. The cyberattack gave them an excuse to double down on that along with warnings that gas supplies could run out in a few days. The result was panic buying with drivers in several states standing in line for hours to get gas. Some stations ran out.

Now it seems that Colonial may have paid the ransom. But the damage has been done. A huge company like Colonial should have tried harder to prevent this. They provide essential infrastructure for our daily lives and make a profit off it. Now, when the failure of their cybersecurity creates a crisis, they expect their customers, mainly working people, to pay for it. We say, “No! That’s wrong!”