Forwarded from: Russell Coker <russellat_private> On Fri, 21 Sep 2001 09:39, you wrote: > http://popularmechanics.com/science/military/2001/9/e-bomb/print.phtml > > BY JIM WILSON > September 2001 > > In the blink of an eye, electromagnetic bombs could throw > civilization back 200 years. And terrorists can build them for > $400. This is a very interesting article, but it fails to mention one crucial point. What is the effect of an EMP weapon on magnetic storage? It would not be difficult to have some Faraday cages filled with spare circuit boards ready for an EMP attack. Then even if high power surges took out shielded computers the damaged parts could be quickly replaced. As long as the data isn't lost it's not that much of a problem. Even the electronics in hard drives can be replaced, and I'm sure it wouldn't be difficult to manufacture hard drives with all the electronics on a module for fast replacement. But if the EMP will wipe the platters of the hard drives then the problem is much worse. Then of course there's the issue of how well magnetic tape stands up to such treatment (should be much more reliable than hard drives due to lack of electronics in the media package, and the fact that the media is tightly wound so only a small section should be at great risk). If you lose your computers and hard drives but have a good working recent backup then you still aren't doing so badly. If EMP pulses can easily wipe out magnetic tape then possibly other backup media should be investigated. I imagine that a CD-RW would not be at risk as the phase-change chemicals would be unlikely to be easily corrupted, is that a good assumption? Russell Coker - ISN is currently hosted by Attrition.org To unsubscribe email majordomoat_private with 'unsubscribe isn' in the BODY of the mail.
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