- Foreign computer hackers will be able to target individual homes
- Campaigners say it goes to far and creates ‘a spy in every home’
- Home information could be ‘sold’ to burglars and identity thieves
Intelligence chiefs have warned that plans to install smart energy meters in every house will leave families vulnerable to terrorist attacks.
According to the Government’s listening agency GCHQ, the plans will create a ‘strategic vulnerability’, giving foreign computer hackers the opportunity to target individual homes, municipal buildings and even whole districts.
Described by security experts as the ‘modern day equivalent of a nuclear strike’, hackers would be able to switch off meters from overseas, cutting off targets from the national grid.
Privacy campaigners are already seeking to block the plans on the grounds that the meters will create a ‘spy in every home’.
The meters will collect details about how people use electricity and gas, allowing snoopers to, for example, scrutinise what time someone goes to bed, washes or uses their computer.
The information will be beamed to a central database held by a utility firm, making it a tempting target for hackers. A further concern is that the meters could allow individual households to be cut off by Whitehall or energy companies at times of future fuel shortages…