Perception of cyberwarfare in US Defence and society

Pierluigi Paganini January 11, 2014

Which is the perception of cyberwarfare in the US Government and within the American population? How much cost Information warfare to the US citizens?

In this post I desire to put together a series of useful information to better understand the perception of cyber threats on both US Government and population.

Cyberwarfare is considerable today one of the main concerns for the United States, outstripping even terrorism. According to defense, military, and national security leaders in a Defense News poll the risks of an imminent cyber attack with serious consequences for the population is high.

Despite 32 percent of polled individuals believe that the government spends too much on defense, their concern for a cyber offensive is high, 45 percent of the 352 industry leaders polled revealed to consider the cyberwarfare is the gravest danger to the U.S.

The cyberspace is considered the fifth domain of warfare and investment since 2010, year of the foundation for the U.S. Cyber Command, have constantly increased.

Stuxnet has demonstrated how much danger coud be a cyber weapon, and has accelerated the army race and the improvement of cyber capabilities of almost every government.

cyberwarfare perception

Despite the term cyberwarfare, cyberwar and Information Warfare are improperly used by security experts, they all represents the materialization of the nightmare of a conflict originated in the cyber space with direct consequences in the real world.

A cyber attack could hit every sector of the US, from banking to defense, countries like Iran, North Korea, China and Russia could hit US networks with a cyber attack that could paralyze the nation.

cyberwarfare threats

That latter concern is that cyber war tactics might blur with traditional terrorism, a new wave of offensive could hit the US and its allies. Cyberwarfare is bringing fear in the American society, the prospect of cyberwarfare between world powers might be compared to a nuclear conflict. Cyber terrorism is reason of great concern for US Intelligence that consider confrontation between cyber power just a matter of cyber espionage in this day.

Considering that the terror of a cyber attack is becoming a shared perception within the population, which will be defense budged of US Defense for this year?
The Congress has approved a $552.1 billion defense budget for new regulations on cyberweapons,  the intent is to prevent the uncontrolled diffusion of malicious agents in the cyberspace.

Section 940 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014, signed into law by President Obama recently, calls for “Control of the Proliferation of Cyber Weapons” to respond to to the increase of state-sponsored hacking and the design of new powerful and dangerous cyber weapons.

“The President shall establish an interagency process to provide for the establishment of an integrated policy to control the proliferation of cyber weapons through unilateral and cooperative law enforcement activities, financial means, diplomatic engagement, and such other means as the President considers appropriate,” the act declares. . . .

The bill establishes huge investment of hundreds of millions of dollars for the defense of the cyberspace for improvement of cyber capabilities, including high profile hacking training, analysis of overall cyber operations, an inventory of the military’s existing cyber skill set and the creation of a new Principal Cyber Advisor to supervise the defense from cyber threats.

The key findings of the act are:

  • $5.8 million for cyber defense
  • Nearly $19 million for cyber security research
  • $68 million to operate the central Cyber Command
  • $20 million for “cyber security advanced research”
  • $14 million for the Air Force’s cyberspace offensive program
  • $169 million to build or expand facilities to house all that cyber operations at Fort Meade’s Marforcybercom HQ-Ops Building and the Cybercom Joint Operations Center

No doubts, the cybewarfare begin to frighten and influence more and more the way we live.

Pierluigi Paganini

(Security Affairs –  cyberwarfare, US Government)

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