The interconnected world in which we live means events half a world away are likely to affect us all.
As Ukraine’s people try to repel Russia’s invasion, there are published reports of an increase in Russian cyber attacks on the computer systems of government agencies and private institutions, such as banks and businesses, in the U.S.
Volusia County officials are taking notice and precautions.
“We have a lot of safety measures in place today — which I’m not going to discuss,” County Manager George Recktenwald said.
Property Appraiser Larry Bartlett said he is aware of the potential of cyber saboteurs to damage or disrupt the county’s data-processing systems.
“I’ve always been concerned about cyber security in this day and age,” Bartlett told The Beacon. “I can’t imagine why anyone would want to hack into the Property Appraiser’s Office, but we get about 200 attacks per day from the Chinese. We’re on the county’s system, and they have a good firewall.”
One of the most readily visible impacts of the Ukraine war is the runup in the cost of driving. Retail gasoline prices are rising as the prices of crude oil surge.
Domestic U.S. oil prices have risen about $19 per barrel within the past week. Noting the steady climb since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said the average price of a gallon of self-serve unleaded regular gas in Florida was $3.48 Sunday, Feb. 28, and the March 2 price was $3.57.
Those prices track the rise in crude prices from about $92 per barrel to $111 on March 2.
“An oil-price increase of that magnitude could translate to an increase of 47 cents at the pump,” Jenkins said. “There may be a lag of a few days or a week or two.”
March 2 trading closed with the highest petroleum prices since May 2011, as reported by CNBC.