Friday, March 13, 2009

Lessons From the Russia-Georgia 'Cyber War'

Kenneth Corbin writes on

With the benefit of hindsight, the Russian military campaign against Georgia last summer seems to offer conclusive proof that cyberwar has come into its own.

Speaking here at the FOSE convention, an annual trade show for government IT workers, Georgia's Secretary of National Security, flanked by a pair of U.S. security experts, recounted the experience of last July when the small nation in the Caucasus saw its digital infrastructure brought to its knees.

"It's distressful to think of the way in which the technology which is so helpful and beneficial for all of us to get all the nations together and then ... is used for the purposes [where] people suffer," said Eka Tkeshelashvili, who at the time of the Russian invasion was Georgia's foreign minister.

Aug. 7 marked the official date of the onset of the conflict, when Russia launched air and ground strikes in the disputed territory of South Ossetia, but the offensive began in earnest the previous month with a massive Internet attack on Georgia's government Web sites and commercial operations.

"Today, cyberspace has clearly emerged as a dimension to attack an enemy and break his will to resist," said Paul Joyal, managing director of public safety and homeland security for National Strategies Inc.

More here.


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