Let’s Talk About Cyber War


“Speaking to a group of U.S. business leaders last week, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta issued a dire warning that foreign hackers are becoming increasingly sophisticated and that their online attacks on transportation systems, banks and other vital facilities are escalating.”

Based on the numerous blog articles that this class has presented on cyber security, I’m pretty sure we have proven this quote to be true. Certain cyber activists, like Defense Secretary Panetta, are again lobbying congress for a more defined structure on how to handle and protect the United States from what he calls a potential “cyber Pearl Harbor”.

The United States has become an increased target for foreign nation sponsored cyber attacks, and we’re pretty unprepared. In August, measure S.3414 was presented to the Senate. Measure S.3414’s basic goal was to, “… enhance the security and resiliency of the cyber and communications infrastructure of the United States.” This measure was unfortunately blocked by a Republican filibuster. Why it was blocked, I’m not going to get into (politics can be a dangerous zone to enter), but what is clear is that there is a need for a more defined government cyber defense policy.

This need has now materialized itself in a bipartisan House bill that only addresses the area of information sharing between targeted companies and the federal government. This new bill, H.R. 3523, is aimed to “… provide for the sharing of certain cyber threat intelligence and cyber threat information between the intelligence community and cybersecurity entities, and for other purposes.”

As the topic of cyber defense has reached a governmental level, it is becoming very clear time and time again that there is an apparent need to a centralized cyber defense measure. The fate of H.R. 3523 is not known yet, but time will tell if we as a country make the move to a more secure digital future.


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8 thoughts on “Let’s Talk About Cyber War

  1. What bothers me about the government attempting to get involved with a higher security standard for cyber defense, is how easily it can be spilled over into an invasion of privacy issues. Personally I’m not a fan of big brother watching over my shoulder.

    • I second this. I feel like they will take things to an extreme measure when it comes to security. It only takes one little thing for this to happen.

    • If these cyber policies are written and executed properly, they can be a huge help. I’m a proponent of a centralized regulation of cyber self defense vis-a-vi the United States Government. Like anything, new technologies need to be regulated. They don’t need to be suppressed or controlled, but hundreds of millions of people can’t be expected to successfully self regulate a tool such as the internet without a strong structure and a helping hand.

      • If being the keyword here, is a very big if. We all saw what almost happened with PIPA and SOPA a while back. The problem is that our government officials are basically oblivious to the impact that united states legal policy with regard to the internet has on the entire world.

    • The debate on privacy is all well and good. However, that is why PGP was invented. What governments need are people who understand these sensitive subjects better then you or I, making the laws/policies because as we have seen in the past governments fail to ever find a nice medium, and I think a lot of that is due to simple ignorance on their part.

  2. I think regulations are needed. If I entrust my information to a company, I expect it to be protected. I’d be pissed if my information was comprised because the company didn’t do something they could have done to prevent it. It’s the same for Cyber Warfare, if we can prevent it, why not? The government just needs to bring in experts to draft the laws and legislation. And the U.S. needs to be able to give information on this legislation to the people before congress votes on it, so we can voice objections if we feel the need. The overall flaw if with the way things are run in Congress right now..

    • I fully agree that regulation is needed. At the moment the only driving force for cyber protection is in the hands of the consumer and private industry. To make it uniform and regulated, a helping hand, like cyber laws, is needed.

  3. The problem about cyber wars is that nobody has the right to stop them, or let’s say no body has come up with an idea to stop all of these attack. In my opinion, these attacks is the only way for weak people to show off !!

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