Only 9 countries may have nuclear weapons, but dozens have cyberweapons. And we're not protected. Cyberweapons use computers and information technology systems for destructive effects. They have changed international relations more profoundly than any advance since the advent of the atomic bomb. In some ways, cyberweapons are even more potentially destabilizing because they are cheap, easily distributed and can be deployed without direct consequences to the attacker.
Dealing with their proliferation is radically changing the nature of state relations and international terrorism, not to mention trying to address the misinformation being spread over social media by overseas actors. The existence of these weapons is very well hidden unless you get hit with a ransomware attack or dive into the dark web. The way these weapons will most likely be used against us will be to attack our critical infrastructure systems (Colonial Pipeline, electric grids), government systems (IRS, USPS), technology suppliers (SolarWinds, Microsoft) and financial systems (pick a bank).
I wish I could tell you that fears about this stuff happening are unfounded but, unfortunately, I know too much about the underlying technology to do so.
I wish I could tell you that fears about this stuff happening are unfounded but, unfortunately, I know too much about the underlying technology to do so. Cyberspace is the battleground for the digital wars of the 21st century, and we all have stuck at least one foot in already. What can America do about it? Make the cybersecurity of our critical information infrastructure a priority. It’s that simple. If we demand it and are willing to pay for it, then it will happen. If not, then be prepared to be collateral damage.
"Did someone mention cyber-warfare?" by Kevin Marks is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0