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[infowar.de] mal wieder Angst vor dem Cyberwar
Die Leute vom NIPC sind sich auch nicht einig: Einerseits sagen sie,
dass in den nächsten 10 Jahren nur Staaten ernsthaft Cyberkrieg führen
können werden, andererseits gelten Hacktivisten plötzlich als neue
Cyberspace Braces For Escalation And War
By Shawna McAlearney Amid, Information Security, 11/29/2001
"We still have a system that is fragile, that is vulnerable to
sophisticated attacks," said national cybersecurity advisor Richard
Clarke in published reports. "Not to 14-year-olds, but to a
sophisticated group, or nation-state, with multiple simultaneous
attacks. It could lead to catastrophic damage to the economy, and, if
done at a time of national security crisis, it could lead to
catastrophic damage to our national defense."
According to a Reuters report, "Even as it fights in Afghanistan with
bombs and guns and allies on horseback, the U.S. military is gearing up
to use computers and code as potentially decisive weapons in the next
phases of its campaign. The goal would be to disable air defense
systems, scramble enemy logistics and perhaps infect software through
tactics being honed by a joint task force set up in 1999 under the
Colorado Springs, Colo.-based U.S. Space Command."
Diverse threats have caused varying levels of concern over the last few
years. Cyberthreats range from the defacement of Web sites by bored
teenagers to devastating malware that causes billions of dollars in
damage and lost productivity. Though we have yet to see terrorist
groups--such as Hizbollah, HAMAS, Abu Nidal and Al Qaeda--employ hacking
or malware to target critical infrastructures, their reliance on
information technology and acquisition of computer expertise are clear
While damage caused by hacktivists--and even cyberterrorists--has been
minimal thus far, security experts predict that the nation's IT
infrastructure will certainly be a target in the future.
Calling cyberterrorism a very real threat, Leslie G. Wiser, Jr., chief
of the training, outreach and strategy section at the National
Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC) testified before a Congressional
subcommittee in August.
"The prospect of information warfare by foreign militaries against our
critical infrastructures is perhaps the greatest potential cyberthreat
to our national security," said Wiser. "We know that many foreign
nations are developing information warfare doctrine, programs and
capabilities for use against the United States or other nations."
Awareness of the need for increased vigilance predates the Sept. 11
"For attackers, viruses and worms are likely to become more
controllable, precise, and predictable--making them more suitable for
weaponization," Dr. Lawrence Gershwin, national intelligence officer for
science and technology, told the Joint Economic Committee last June.
"Advanced modeling and simulation technologies are likely to assist in
identifying critical nodes for an attack and conducting battle damage
assessments. Most U.S. adversaries have access to the technology needed
to pursue computer network operations."
"For the next 5 to 10 years or so, only nation-states appear to have the
discipline, commitment and resources to fully develop the capabilities
to attack critical infrastructures," testified Gershwin.
In an October report, NIPC said "Cyberprotestors are becoming
increasingly more organized. . .and will certainly target infrastructure
more often and exploit opportunities to disrupt or damage it."
"Cyberattacks against the Afghan region are just a new target," says
Jason Wright, an industry analyst at Frost and Sullivan. "Before that it
was just rebels without a cause, hacking at will. But now there is
political motivation behind it."
The hacking group Young Intelligent Hackers Against Terrorism (YIHAT)
was formed in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks--and has been
fighting with Pakistani hacker group Gforce ever since. The groups
appear to vie with one another for the most enemy sites defaced in the
name of their "cause."
However, some sites are falling victim to misguided hacktivists. A Web
site for the government of the Islamic State of Afghanistan was hacked
and forced offline with a flood of hate messages from hacktivists who
didn't note that it's an opponent of the Taliban regime.
And hacktivism isn't limited to the parties directly involved in the
conflict. Within days of the first U.S. air strikes on Afghanistan,
pro-Taliban Pakistanis defaced a number of Indian government computers,
posting messages in support of terrorist leader Osama bin Laden and his
Al Qaeda network.
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