Ted Koppel - The Predictions of "Lights Out"

November 18, 2015 - Ted Koppel 11/18/2015 Views: 15,833

Ted Koppel recalls covering the Iran hostage crisis for "Nightline" and discusses his book "Lights Out," which details the U.S.'s vulnerability to cyber attacks. (5:57)

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MY GUEST TONIGHT IS A LEGENDARYNEWSMAN WHO HAS ANCHORED ABC'S

"NIGHTLINE" FOR 25 YEARS.

HIS NEW BOOK IS CALLED "LIGHTSOUT."

PLEASE WELCOME, TED KOPPEL,EVERYONE.

( CHEERS AND APPLAUSE )

>> TREVOR, THIS IS MY OLDESTGRANDSON, AND TODAY IS JAKE'S

18th BIRTHDAY.

AND MY WIFE AND I WERE TRYING TOTHINK OF A CHEAP GIFT, AND,

FRANKLY, MEETING YOU WAS THE--

>> Trevor: HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

( CHEERS AND APPLAUSE )

HAPPY BIRTHDAY.

( APPLAUSE )

I WAS CONFUSED FOR A SECOND.

I WAS LIKE, WHICH ONE IS TEDKOPPEL?

>> EXACTLY.

>> Trevor: I COULDN'T TELL.

>> THE OLD GEEZER.

>> Trevor: THE RESEMBLANCE ISUNCANNY.

>> STUNNING, ISN'T IT?

>> Trevor: IT REALLY IS.

I DO NOT THINK THERE IS ANYBODYIN THE NEWS WHO CAN SAY THEY

HAVE HAD A MORE ACCOMPLISHEDCAREER THAN YOU HAVE HAD.

YOU STARTED "NIGHTLINE" FROM ANINTERESTING PLACE.

YOU WERE COVERING IT WAS IRAN ATTHE TIME, CORRECT?

>> I WAS COVERING THE STATEDEPARTMENT.

AND WE WERE COVERING THE HOSTAGECRISIS EVERY NIGHT.

EVERY NIGHT.

I'LL TELL YOU AN INTERESTINGSTORY.

WHEN-- WHEN WE BEGAN COVERINGTHE HOSTAGE CRISIS, WE GOT OUR

OWN LITTLE SECTION OF THENEWSROOM, AND THEY ASSIGNED A

TELEPHONE TO US.

AND THE-- I MEAN, A PARTICULARPHONE NUMBER--

OUR EXTENSION NUMBER WAS 444.

AND AS SOME OF THE OLDER-- DOYOU HAVE ANY OLDER PEOPLE OUT

THERE?

>> Trevor: THERE'S ONE.

>> ONE OR TWO, RIGHT.

>> Trevor: WAY IN THE BACK.

>> THE HOSTAGES ULTIMATELYWERE HELD FOR 444 DAYS.

THE NUMBER WAS LOOKING AT USWHOLE TIME.

>> Trevor: WOW.

>> Trevor: TED KOPPEL, THENAME IS SYNONYMOUS WITH GREAT

JOURNALISM, AND NOT JUST GREATTV PERSONALITY BUT GREAT

JOURNALISM.

>> YOU'RE VERY NICE TO SAY THAT,BUT YOU'RE GOING TO BORE PEOPLE

TO TEARS OUT THERE.

>> Trevor: NO, NO, I'M VERYHONEST TO SAY THAT.

I'M VERY HONEST TO SAY THAT.

>> GET A LITTLE NASTY.

>> Trevor: DO YOU THINK-- "GETA LITTLE NASTY," HE SAID.

DO YOU THINK THERE'S STILLJOURNALISM IN THE NEWS OR IS IT

PERSONALITY DRIVEN?

>> THERE'S STILL JOURNALISM INTHE NEWS BUT I MUST SAY YOU AND

YOUR COLLEAGUES WHO KIND OF MIXIMPORTANT SUBJECTS WITH HUMOR

ARE IN MANY RESPECTS FOCUSING ONMORE IMPORTANT ISSUES THAN SOME

OF THE MY OLD COLLEAGUES.

>> Trevor: LET'S GET TO THEBOOK.

IT IS A VERY INTERESTING AND YETOMINOUS BOOK.

THE FIRST FEW CHAPTERS AREBASICALLY YOU PREDICTING THE END

OF AMERICA.

I MEAN--

>> WELL, NO, IT'S NOT MEPREDICTING THE END OF AMERICA.

IF I MAY, LET ME SAY SOMETHINGABOUT WHY I'M SO HAPPY TO BE

HERE WITH YOU THIS EVENING.

BECAUSE YOUR AUDIENCE TENDS TOBE YOUNGER.

THE LIKELIHOOD OF A CYBER ATTACKON THE ELECTRIC POWER GRID IS

IMMINENT.

BUT IT MAY NOT HAPPEN IN MYLIFETIME.

IT ALMOST CERTAINLY WILL HAPPENIN THEIRS.

>> Trevor: BUT YOU TALK ABOUTIT IN THE BOOK.

YOU SAY THE BIGGEST THREATS THATWE STAND TO FACE NOW IS NOT

PHYSICAL TERRORISM BUT CYBERTERRORISM.

>> CYBER TERRORISM.

AND IT'S NOT ME SAYING-- LOOK,THE PRESIDENT HAS WARNED ABOUT

IT.

FORMER SECRETARY OF DEFENSE LEONPANETTA WARNED ABOUT IT.

THE FORMER SECRETARY OF HOMELANDSECURITY.

THE MAN WHO IS CURRENTLY HEADINGUP THE FIGHT AGAINST ISIS,

GENERAL LLOYD AUSTIN, HE'S THECOMCOMMANDER, HE TOLD ME

IT'S NOT A QUESTION OF IF ITHAPPENS.

IT'S ONLY A QUESTION OF WHEN.

>> Trevor: YOU LIST IT OUT INTHE BOOK.

YOU SAY ALL THEY NEED TO DO ISHACK AND WE'VE GOT THREE POWER

GRIDS.

IT'S BASICALLY THE EAST COAST,THE WEST COAST, AND THEN TEXAS

HAS THEIR OWN.

>> THEY HAVE THEIR OWN.

( LAUGHTER )

>> Trevor: BUT YOU'RE TELLINGTHE PEOPLE WHAT TO DO.

I WAS READING THE BOOK GOING,"THE WRONG PEOPLE MUST" BECAUSE

I DIDN'T KNOW THAT.

IF I WAS A BAD GUY, NOW I WOULDKNOW WHAT TO DO.

THANK YOU, TED KOPPEL, YOU'VEJUST GIVEN ME THE INFORMATION.

>> IT'S NOT AS EASY AS PLUGGINGIN A COMPUTER AND SAYING LET'S

HACK THE INTERNET.

IT REQUIRES YEARS OF MAPPING OFTHE-- OF THESE GRIDS.

>> Trevor: YES.

>> THE CHINESE, HOWEVER, AREALREADY INSIDE.

THE RUSSIANS ALREADY ARE INSIDE.

THE IRANIANS ARE CLOSE TO BEINGINSIDE.

THE NORTH KOREANS NOT FARBEHIND.

AND HERE COMES THE REAL KILLER,ISIS, WHICH HAS $2 BILLION

AVAILABLE TO THEM.

ISIS CAN BUY THE EXPERTISE.

SO THAT WITHIN THENOT-TOO-DISTANT FUTURE THEY

COULD GET IN.

AND WHAT WE'RE TALKING ABOUTHERE IS KNOCKING OUT POWER FOR

TENS OF MILLIONS OF PEOPLE OVERA PERIOD OF WEEKS, MAYBE EVEN

MONTHS.

>> Trevor: IS THAT THE GOODNEWS OR THE BAD NEWS?

>> THAT'S THE-- I TOLD YOU, THISWASN'T GOING TO BE A LOT OF

GIGGLES.

>> Trevor: YOU TAKE IT SOSERIOUSLY YOU STARTED DOOMSDAY

PREPPING.

>> WELL "DOOMSDAY PREPPING" ITHINK IS A LITTLE-- IF WE

PREPARE FOR ANY DISASTER IN OURLIVES, WHETHER THAT'S A BLIZZARD

OR WHETHER THAT'S A HURRICANE ORWHETHER THAT'S, YOU KNOW,

SOMEBODY LOSING A JOB OR WHETHERIT'S AN ATTACK ON THE GRID, THE

ONLY POINT I'M MAKING,TREVOR, IS WHEN YOU GO ONLINE TO

THE RED CROSS OR GO ONLINE TOTHE DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND

SECURITY, THEY TELL YOU TOPREPARE FOR TWO OR THREE DAYS.

TWO OR THREE DAYS' WORTH OFFOOD.

TWO OR THREE DAYS WORTH OFWATER.

THIS ISN'T GOING TO LAST TWO ORTHREE DAYS.

THIS IS GOING TO LAST WEEKS.

MONTHS.

WE'RE NOT PREPARED FOR THAT.

( LAUGHTER )

>> Trevor: YOU'RE RIGHT,NOT GIGGLES.

NO GIGGLES AT ALL.

I'M NOT GOING TO LET YOU GO.

AS YOU SAID BACK IN THE DAY,CALL THE AFFILIATES BECAUSE

WE'RE RUNNING LONG.

WE'RE GOING TO CONTINUE THIS ONTHE WEB AND THE APPS.

IF YOU'RE ON TV, "LIGHTS OUT" ISIN THE STORES NOW.

TED KOPPEL, EVERYBODY.