Center for Advanced Cyber Studies: Foreign Cyber Attacks on American Corporations and Government - Billion Dollars in Losses Later, Are Americans Still Too Restrained?

Center for Advanced Cyber Studies: In the last days, due to the public discussions about Chinese offensive cyber operations against America and the public reporting of the People's Liberation Army hacker unit 61398, offensive cyber operations have attracted significant media and popular interest. The question is if America is too restrained to be able to deter and counter strike.

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Jan Kallberg, PhD

Jan Kallberg, PhD

Cyber weapons requirements ignore is the issue of control. Those digital bits easily can be copied and distributed, and targeting removed or redesigned. How can a coder control the duplication of the code?

Dallas, TX (PRWEB) March 29, 2013

At a time when the United States has already lost billions, estimations ranging from $2 billion to $400 billion a year (http://www.nextgov.com/cybersecurity/2013/03/dhs-worries-more-about-fundamental-attack-cyberspace-theft-napolitano-says/61759/) in intellectual property as a result of foreign cyber espionage, not to mention the loss of military advantage, there are still many legal hurdles raised against American offensive cyber operations.

Security expert Jan Kallberg, PhD, comments this development: "The Chinese cyber attacks have prompted numerous articles seeking to create a legal foundation for cyber conflicts. Naturally, cyber operations should be used in an ethical way, but the hurdles generated by the legal community are staggering. In reality - it becomes impossible to seek to strike back and be in compliance."

Security expert Jan Kallberg, PhD, says: " The country is facing an enemy unrestrained by limitations, clearly visible in blatant cyber attacks on military networks, major banks and media outlets.The attacker's opportunity is that America is too restrained - it becomes a boxing match when only one fighter do the punches".

He continues: "The country is facing an enemy unrestrained by limitations, clearly visible in blatant cyber attacks on military networks, major banks and media outlets."

Proponents of tighter rules for offensive cyber operations want to require the United States ensure that malicious software attack only combatant systems and legitimate military targets, and not affect any other systems.

Kallberg comments: "These requirements ignore is the issue of control. Those digital bits easily can be copied and distributed, and targeting removed or redesigned. How can a coder control the duplication of the code?", and continues, "While code can be targeted to a specific military system, that is no guarantee it will be limited because of the dual use of information technology. There is no control of the code once it is released."

The mainstream legal perception of cyber is based on an assumption that actors are either civilian or military: Kallberg commentary: "There is no such clear distinction in the militarized and contested digital world. It is digital bits; in the same way that we cannot distinguish military air and civilian air. It is just air."

Kallberg continues: "In cyberspace, universities, municipal utilities, communication companies and other actors are a part of the war-fighting effort without clear boundaries to being civilian or military."

Second, to avoid the slightest collateral damage, the counter-attacker needs to be able to identify each computer in the counter-attacked network and verify its purpose. That requires full overview of the targeted system, maybe beyond even what the defending system administrators are aware of.

"The only way you can verify resources in another network is to preemptively gain access to their networks and collect targeting information. So to be complaint you need to already have penetrated and infiltrated any potentially adversarial state's information systems. That is the requirement - otherwise you can not distinguish the operative parts. So it becomes then hen and the egg - what comes first?", states Jan Kallberg, PhD

Jan Kallberg's academic website can be found at: http://www.cyberdefense.com

List of cyber publication: http://www.cyberdefense.com/thinking/publications.htm

Center for Advanced Cyber Studies is a research group lead by Dr. Jan Kallberg. The center is a platform for collaboration and joint project in cyberdefense and cyber operations studies. Dr. Kallberg can be reached by email jkallberg(at)cyberdefense(dot)com.

Dr. Kallberg, founder of Center for Advanced Cyber Studies, is open to be interviewed in regard to cyber security, offensive cyber operations, cyber deterrence, cyber superiority, threats and opportunities of a militarized cyber space.


Contact

  • Jan Kallberg, PhD
    Center for Advanced Cyber Studies
    479-886-8887
    Email

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