Running title: Cyber War – The Next Threat To National Security and What To Do About It.
It has been awhile and I have been quite busy. Do forgive.
It is safe to assume that, prior to 9/11, the United States has had some sort of cyber-security infrastructure. After 9/11, cyber-security programs have grown and expanded across the border. From the Pentagon to United States Airforce (USAF), cyber-warfare and cyber-security is serious business. The question is, after 9/11, with all these tools in place, how safe are we? Enter CyberWar by Richard Clarke. Cleverly and brilliantly written, this book goes to great length to illustrate that … yes … we’re still in dire straits when it comes to cyber-security when it comes to the US. Don’t get me wrong about this book is not meant to be alarmist, fearmongering prose that would most likely make you loose control of your bowels, but it is a wake up call to folks that work in the industry to really evaluate EVERY system that is out there. An eye-opener: China and North Korea not only has the ability shut themselves out of the world wide web (sort of cyber-islands) but they also have the ability to launch some serious cyber-attacks. Oh right, I forgot to mention … very effective ones too. Now some may laugh at the possibility of a country shutting itself off the Internet. Oh ye of short memory. Only recently Egypt has proven this possibility. The fact that this stunned many people, pretty much made me a bit more worried. Another eye-opener: many of our utilities (powerplants, water-treatment, telephone, etc.) are not only online but are near 100% digital. No analog back-ups simply because it may seem to some that going analog is taking steps backward. As a former engineering student and computer-tech worker … I can’t help but mutter rapid fire WTFs at this. Me thinks that there is a lot of work to be done, and so does Mr. Clarke. The book, by no means (and as I have probably mentioned before), does not set out to cause us to start doing a Chicken Little. If anything it has shown that America is working hard at developing its cyber-infrastructure, in terms of defense and security. We just simply need to start to looking more closely at some of our systems out there. Well written, thought provoking book that is should be in the literary arsenal of anyone that works with computers and networks. A must read for anyone that uses computers and the Internet … and I’m guessing that’s probably most of us. Well … except the folks living under rocks.