Intelligence about the tragedy in Benghazi continues to dribble out very slowly, almost one document at a time. Some of the electronic cables, messages and reproductions of other physical documents have come into view over the past several weeks. Some of these documents were classified, but still found their way to members of Congress and openly reported in the media.

However, one piece of electronic information about security concerns on that fateful day has not received the attention it deserves. Keep reading →

Many members of Congress don’t really understand cyber issues and that’s getting in the way of passing legislation to protect the country, said the leader of the House Homeland cybersecurity subcommittee.

The public takes the use of the Internet for granted and that complacency extends to some members of Congress said Dan Lungren, chairman of the House Homeland cybersecurity subcommittee. “It is not just a domain of warfare. It is a domain of everyday living. Everything we do depends on that today,” he said at a recent defense industry conference. Keep reading →

Intelligence organizations are racing to collect cyber intelligence in efforts to identify and monitor the development, use and sale of offensive cyber capabilities by individual actors, criminal organizations, terrorist groups and nation states. This is a formidable undertaking to say the least. Consider the facilities and infrastructure needed to make a tank. Now think about the facilities and infrastructure needed to make a cyber weapon. All you need is ambition coupled with a laptop, Internet connection, programming skills, a search engine for research and maybe a couple of books – all of which are openly available. Add to that the hacker underground and black-market for malicious code and sale of newly discovered vulnerabilities and you have everything needed for the development and sale of cyber weapons. Keep reading →

Acts of cyber aggression on governments and businesses are now considered a top risk globally. Earlier this year the World Economic Forum (WEF) released their 2012 report on Global Risks. That report looked at fifty areas of risk across specific domains such as the economy, the environment, geopolitics, society and technology.

Five of the top ten risks, however, were closely if not directly related to the cyber domain and cybersecurity concerns. Among them: Keep reading →

Not long ago, I was inspired by this past summer’s LandWarNet Conference to develop what I thought the military knowledgebase dashboard of the future might look like. I had heard our senior military leaders call for the Army cyber warrior of the future to defend our nation against the increasing number of cyber attacks — someone who is a real geek, but also capable of the patriotism and discipline required for military life and a high-level security clearance.

My friend and professional colleague, Arun Majumdar, Cutter Consortium, and a panelist at the recent CyberSecurity Conference, brought this point home. He talked about the notion of need for offensive capabilities and the implications of the Stuxnet worm as a well-known example of how an offensive capability can be used to inflict targeted damage on critical infrastructure. Keep reading →

The race to keep pace with conventional arms development recently ran head long into the race for cyber dominance–and sustained an eye-opening set-back.

These weapons programs take years to develop and typically cost billions of dollars. But the damage goes far beyond the dollars spent on the program to date. The loss of time in the conventional arms race is perhaps the biggest area of loss and the greatest concern for Defense Department strategic planners. Keep reading →

A new arms race began a few years back and its rapid revolutions will make the cold war era look like a minuscule research project for a white paper!

The new race is to develop offensive, defensive and intelligence collection capabilities for cyber space operations. Keep reading →

Social media is perhaps the greatest tool for mass communication–and for attracting like-minded individuals. That is not new. Back in 2005, for instance, the Journal of International Security Affairs reported on the increased web presence of several major Islamic militias.

Threat intelligence analysis, however, indicates that information and activities within social networking sites is now viewed as one of the primary sources of cyber intelligence on extremist groups and terrorists. Keep reading →

The cyber threats we face today routinely transcend industries, geographic boarders as well as government, military, and business domains. The impact of the aggressive cyber attacks we have witnessed recently, however, have become so substantial that it has now reached priority status in the executive suite.

“C” level executives are now routinely involved when their organizations experience one of these attacks. That is a departure from what we have seen. Keep reading →