Malware

Gearing up for cyber warfare


CyberwarHot on the heels of the Estonia DDoS attack is news that NATO, especially in the U.S., is gearing up for cyber warfare. According to NATO, the threat of military cyberattack must be taken seriously. In fact, if the reports are to be believed, the presence of cyber warfare in the future is but an inevitable progression.

Excerpt from The Registry:

In Brussels yesterday, NATO defense ministers agreed that firm and decisive action was necessary to protect "information systems of critical importance," Reuters reports.

As it stands, the USA is not only prepping its own cyber defenses, but is also honing her ability to mount network assaults. For this purpose, a new three-star cyber command is being setup at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana. In fact, it is already home to about 25,000 military personnel involved in anything from electronic warfare to network defense.

The predominant worry to the U.S. appears to be China. According to the CNN:

China is seeking to unseat the United States as the dominant power in cyberspace, a U.S. Air Force general leading a new push in this area said Wednesday. "They're the only nation that has been quite that blatant about saying, 'We're looking to do that,"' 8th Air Force Commander Lt. Gen. Robert Elder told reporters.

The word straight from the Pentagon:

China's People's Liberation Army has established information warfare units to develop viruses to attack enemy computer systems and networks

You can read the rest of the report from CNN: General: China taking on U.S. in cyber arms race

Whatever parties it might involve, just how likely a future do you think it is where hostile nations take their disagreements into cyberspace? What will be the likely targets? Also, as an IT professional, is there anything at all that you could or should do preemptively to protect your company?

Join the discussion.

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

5 comments
Coeur-de-Lion
Coeur-de-Lion

in the Chinese Imperial Gardens the gardeners were said to prune the trees so that the results would be appreciated by their great-grandchildren ... plus ca change ...

newsplan1
newsplan1

I don?t believe that the People?s Republic of China will engage in massive disruption of United States online activities. The PRC (or those affiliated with it) prefer to obtain sensitive corporate and military data. There have been Internet disruption incidents in the USA that were tracked back to Chinese citizens but as I recall these were individual initiatives, not organized efforts. However, any group that can penetrate secure networks and obtain information obviously has the potential ability to disrupt communications and services. If the PRC ever wanted to show its cyber-muscles, the most likely targets would be non-military governmental entities with limited network budgets, such as ground transportation authorities. It could be something as simple as shutting down automatic toll payments on state highways or even crashing specific computers so that traffic is delayed, for instance. The cyber attack would be non-lethal (so that it didn?t provoke a strong response) but it would send a message. And to think?in the late 1990?s I had a conversation with an Internet expert from China. He told me that his country only had a handful of servers and they were not interconnected. If he wanted to access a server at a nearby university, he had to do a dial-up connection through Hong Kong. Things have changed.

paulmah
paulmah

Whatever parties it might involve, just how likely a future do you think it is where hostile nations take their disagreements into cyberspace. What will be the likely targets?

pgm554
pgm554

Everybody is trying hack everybody else. Financial institutions are constantly under attack from the Ruskies,but you arn't going to get much co-operation from the Russian gov.

DanLM
DanLM

Cripple the industry, local government infrastructure. And you can cripple a nation when you attack it with your army. Dan