Warfare

"We Are Not Prepared"

Source: http://www.popsci.com/technology/article/2010-02/washington-war-games-simulate-crippling-cyber-attack-us

Washington insiders recently sweated out a real-time war game where a cyberattack crippled cell phone service, Internet and even electrical grids across the U.S. The unscripted, dynamic simulation allowed former White House officials and the Bipartisan Policy Center to study the problems that might arise during a real cyberattack emergency, according to Aviation Week’s Ares Defense Blog.

The Policy Center’s vice-president reports “”The general consensus of the panel today was that we are not prepared to deal with these kinds of attacks.”

The nightmarish scenario that unfolded represented a worst-case example. As former secretary of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff noted, many cyberattacks can be stopped if individual cell phone or Internet users simply follow the best practices and use the right tools. Similarly, another participant pointed out that private Internet companies would not sit idly by as a virus ran amok.

A collapse of power across the U.S. also only took place when the simulation brought in factors such as high demand during the summer, a hurricane that had damaged power supply lines, and coordinated bombings that accompanied the cyberattack and subsequent failure of the Internet.

Still, the war game highlighted crucial issues about the government’s own reliance upon communications that might go down during a real-life scenario. One of the biggest problems was how the President ought to respond to a situation that caused damage like warfare but lacked an immediately identifiable foreign adversary. Smaller-scale cyberattacks have already complicated real-world diplomacy, such as the alleged Chinese cyberattacks on Google and other U.S. companies.

Ares Defense Blog questioned a curious missing element from the simulation, in that there was no mention of what happened to phone or Internet service in the rest of the world. Surely a nation that decided to launch cyberattacks against the U.S. would take safeguards to protect its own crucial communication services, which would possibly help U.S. officials narrow down the list of suspects.

Another question seemed more mundane but equally important — how would the government activate the National Guard with cell phone service down?

The Pentagon’s DARPA science lab recently pushed for a “Cyber Genome Program” that could trace digital fingerprints to cyberattack culprits. But identifying whether a cyber attack came from individual civilians, shadowy hacker associations or government cyber-warriors has proven tricky in the meantime.

[via Ares Defense Blog]

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Friday, February 19th, 2010 digital No Comments

Billionaire Earnings Fight! [Movies]

Source: http://feeds.gawker.com/~r/gizmodo/full/~3/DWoI_ceFFTo/avatar-vs-modern-warfare-2-billionaire-earnings-fight

Avatar, the soon king of movies, vs Modern Warfare 2, the king of videogames. Here’s a look at how their earnings stack up by the numbers. The biggest surprise? Modern Warfare had a significantly larger ad budget. [Business Management]


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Friday, January 15th, 2010 digital No Comments

#whentwitterwasdown – Twitter crippled by massive #ddos (distributed denial of service) attack

As many of you may have noticed, Twitter was down for many hours starting Thursday morning August 6 and remained intermittent even when it was brought back up. The theory is that this was caused by a massive DDOS attack on their servers including the services that other web applications depended on — that means that outside services (twitter applications) were also taken down.

For an explanation of denial-of-service attack or distributed-denial-of-service, this is the wikipedia entry. It basically is an attacker using a large number of “zombie” computers to “hit” the victim’s site at the same time, thus overloading it, and causing it to not be able to respond to legitimate traffic.

ddos-diagram

Full Coverage of the Social Media DDoS (Source: Mashable)


Is Cyber Warfare to Blame for Twitter Meltdown?

Denial of Service Attacks Being Investigated by Google, Twitter, Facebook

Facebook Problems Also the Result of DDoS Attack

Twitter Outage Explained: What’s a Distributed Denial of Service Attack (DDoS)?

Twitter Down Due to Denial of Service Attack (DDoS)

Facebook Down. Twitter Down. Social Media Meltdown.

Twitter Down: Twitter Doesn’t Know Why

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Friday, August 7th, 2009 digital No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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