Thursday, November 19, 2009
Cyberwar - Not a game.
CNET) -- Major countries and nation-states are engaged in a "Cyber Cold War," amassing cyberweapons, conducting espionage, and testing networks in preparation for using the Internet to conduct war, according to a new report to be released on Tuesday by McAfee.
In particular, countries gearing up for cyberoffensives are the U.S., Israel, Russia, China, and France, the says the report, compiled by former White House Homeland Security adviser Paul Kurtz and based on interviews with more than 20 experts in international relations, national security and Internet security.
"We don't believe we've seen cases of cyberwarfare," said Dmitri Alperovitch, vice president of threat research at McAfee. "Nations have been reluctant to use those capabilities because of the likelihood that [a big cyberattack] could do harm to their own country. The world is so interconnected these days."
Threats of cyberwarfare have been hyped for decades. There have been unauthorized penetrations into government systems since the early ARPANET days and it has long been known that the U.S. critical infrastructure is vulnerable.
However, experts are putting dots together and seeing patterns that indicate that there is increasing intelligence gathering and building of sophisticated cyberattack capabilities, according to the report titled "Virtually Here: The Age of Cyber Warfare."
"While we have not yet seen a 'hot' cyberwar between major powers, the efforts of nation-states to build increasingly sophisticated cyberattack capabilities, and in some cases demonstrate a willingness to use them, suggest that a 'Cyber Cold War' may have already begun," the report says.
Because pinpointing the source of cyberattacks is usually difficult if not impossible, the motivations can only be speculated upon, making the whole cyberwar debate an intellectual exercise at this point. But the report offers some theories.
READ THE FULL STORY HERE
Posted by Steve Douglass at 7:08 AM