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US fuel pipeline hackers 'didn't mean to create problems'




A cyber-criminal gang that took a major US fuel pipeline offline over the weekend has acknowledged the incident in a public statement.


"Our goal is to make money and not creating problems for society," DarkSide wrote on its website.

The US issued emergency legislation on Sunday after Colonial Pipeline was hit by a ransomware cyber-attack.


The pipeline carries 2.5 million barrels a day - 45% of the East Coast's supply of diesel, petrol and jet fuel.

The operator took itself offline on Friday after the cyber-attack. Work to restore service is continuing.

The US government relaxed rules on fuel being transported by road, meaning drivers in 18 states can work extra or more flexible hours when transporting refined petroleum products.


US fuel prices at the pump were largely unaffected on Monday, but there are fears that this could change if the shutdown is prolonged.


Independent oil market analyst Gaurav Sharma told the BBC a lot of fuel was now stranded at refineries in Texas.


"Unless they sort it out by Tuesday, they're in big trouble," said Mr Sharma. "The first areas to be hit would be Atlanta and Tennessee, then the domino effect goes up to New York."

He said oil futures traders were now "scrambling" to meet demand, at a time when US inventories are declining.


Demand - especially for fuel for cars - is on the rise as consumers return to the roads and the economy recovers.


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