RE: [ISN] Cyber terrorism is 'fantasy'

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Fri Nov 30 2001 - 04:14:50 PST

  • Next message: InfoSec News: "Re: [ISN] Cyber terrorism is 'fantasy'"

    Forwarded from: Junkmail Rosenberger <junkmailat_private>
    I reject Knowles' argument out-of-hand.  He misses the point when he asserts
    "[who] would have thought that someone would have hijacked commercial
    jetliners and used them as cruise missiles."
    The simple fact is that terrorists *always* had the ability to turn planes
    into cruise missiles; their effectiveness as flying bombs merely grew in
    proportion to their fuel payload.  On the other hand, Cluley & I & others
    insist no one [yet] has the ability to destroy America with a computer virus
    (read for starters).  We can
    therefore sum up Knowles' misguided argument as follows:
       --> "commercial aircraft as bomb" is VERY feasible but NOT likely;
       --> "computer virus as bomb" is NOT feasible but VERY likely.
    Knowles & others (e.g. Michael Vatis, Richard Clarke) could validate their
    cyber-terrorism arguments with just one -- I repeat, ONE -- technologically
    feasible idea for destroying America with a computer virus.
    Rob Rosenberger, Vmyths editor
    Truth about computer virus hysteria
    [WK Note: One problem I have is occasionally I don't make myself clear
    in my commentary on ISN, this can be attributed to lack of sleep, lack
    of RedBull in the fridge, and the thought of business travel. There
    are others, but I'd have to sleep on that.
    > I guess Cluley thinks the same about landmines too, if one is not
    > careful where placing them and mapping their location, one could
    > also very well be a victim, but viruses like landmines make for
    > great force multipliers for a cyberterrorist."
    What I was meaning to say is that I don't expect the Internet to melt
    down over one virus, but that the tactical use of viruses would be one
    weapon of several that a cyberterrorist would likely use to create
    mayhem. Just as you would use landmines, razor wire, & interlocking
    fields of machinegun fire to slow your enenmy down.
    > I am not looking forward to the day of when we see a simultaneous
    > cross-platform, multiple vulnerability virus that would have the
    > AV companies pulling their hair out trying to find a solution, and
    > then able to push that software update onto networks severely
    > choked with a combination of DDoS attacks, virus traffic, network
    > outages, and major DNS servers down from repeated hacking attacks.
    I agree with Rob that Usama is not interested in melting your MP3's,
    Russian pr0n pics, or mailing out everyone in your Outlook address
    book 'I send this for your advice' with a virus, Usama wants you dead.
    I have yet to see anyone bring up cyberterrorism with regular
    terrorism, and that is another point that I should make clear here, I
    have always belived (along with a few others) that cyberterrorism
    would be used first before a large scale terrorist attack.
    Slowing down or stopping commerical, goverment, and military networks
    along with the interdependence of the Internet would cripple the basic
    command and control of government and first responders to a major
    terrorism event. 
    But enough of me ranting on, I have to get some sleep and run to
    Costco for another case of RedBull.     - William Knowles 9.30.01]
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    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Fri Nov 30 2001 - 06:35:22 PST