About the Author

Alexandra Van Dine is a program associate with the scientific and technical affairs team at the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI), where she works on the NTI Nuclear Security Index and NTI’s cyber projects. She joined NTI after serving as a Herbert Scoville Jr. Peace Fellow there. Ms. Van Dine presented work on cyber security at nuclear facilities at the 2015 PONI Summer Conference at Los Alamos National Laboratory and the 2016 PONI Capstone Conference at U.S. Strategic Command. She has been published in the U.N. Dispatch and Just Security. Prior to NTI, Ms. Van Dine held positions with the U.S. Department of Defense, the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, U.S. Senators John Kerry and William “Mo” Cowan, and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick. She graduated from Georgetown University with a B.S. in Foreign Service, majoring in International Politics and Security Studies. She earned honors on her thesis and was awarded the J. Raymond Trainor Award for outstanding academic achievement in International Politics.
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U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Franklin R. Ramos/Released


The Cyber Threat to Nuclear Facilities

Stuxnet illustrated the art of the possible in the cyber-nuclear space. This malware defeated security systems, jumped iargaps (which disconnect networks from the internet) and, most importantly, caused physical consequences. Stuxnet’s aim was limited-break centrifuges. But what if hackers had more catastrophic ambitions?