Henderson Pope posted an update 1 week ago
All experts agree that this Suxnet virus is definitely an specific and sophisticated weapon, created by leading experts backed by governmental resources. It is very precise in their target and efficient in the dissemination. Iran has admitted some damage and stated publicly that “an electronic war continues to be launched against Iran”. It is mildly ironic, as Iran has also boasted before to get “the world’s second largest cyber- army”.
New viruses, related by experts to Suxnet, are actually discovered since: “Duqu” this year and “Flame” in 2012. Those seem to own more spying purposes, collecting data through the infected computers. The Flame virus did include a “kill” function to make it disappear when discovered. Information has surfaced linking those viruses inside a joint US-Israeli operation code-named: “Olympic Games”. The US and Israel therefore are probably at war with Iran right this moment; albeit only a cyber-war, but war nonetheless. It should be noted from the reader that the USA explicitly considers a cyber-attack being a casus belli for conventional war!
The US has set-up the United States Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM) to coordinate all aspects of cyber-warfare. It is clear how the Department of Defense takes the difficulty very seriously. And things are happening below the quiet surface: a Chinese-based spying computer network named “GhostNet” was identified. This followed Operation Aurora, by which Chinese hackers targeted Google and at least twenty other US companies, on the background of your row with Chinese policies. It is well-known to US Intelligence that China invests hugely in Cyber-warfare. Their cyber-warfare units spread viruses and malware, mainly to get information from civilian and governmental companies. And many cases of commercial espionage are already documented.
But every one of the many examples which have filtered towards the media are extremely mild when compared with what could possibly be done in case of open warfare or even a terrorist operation. Besides the obvious espionage and data gathering possibilities a contemporary society purports to hackers, you’ll find real physical air force news magazine dangers. All the infrastructure of your modern country is based on computers and telecommunications. A well-targeted virus could cripple the electricity distribution network for weeks. Communications may be virtually taken to a halt. Planes, cars and also other modes of transportation are highly influenced by microchips that might be destroyed by an Electro Magnetic Pulse bomb, or hijacked. The military may be crippled, its drones hi-jacked, its planes made un-operational. Doomsday scenarios are only limited from the reader’s imagination. If the Israelis have succeeded in remotely crippling Iranian centrifuges in the deeply buried secret bunker, what’s out of reach?
The significance of spyware, cyber-security and cyber-warfare will only become clearer after a while. More samples of below-the-surface skirmishes will gradually find their way towards the media. We are now inside the era of electronic war. New ways is going to be found to infect our computers and spy upon us. One in the looming threats will be the hardware virus: a bit tweaking using a very complex microchip may make on an undetectable virus. This may be the basis with the new thriller by Marc Brem: “Rain Fund”.