NEWS FROM THE LAB - Thursday, April 23, 2009

Taking Cyberwar Seriously? Posted by Alia @ 03:50 GMT

Techies and non-techies have been debating about "cyberwar" – is there such a thing? Is it a threat? Who would do it? Who cares? – since the movie WarGames came out in 1983.

No consensus on the topic as yet, but it looks like some military officials are taking the threat seriously. Computerworld reports that the Obama administration may be setting up a military command center dedicated to combating and "developing offensive cyberwarfare capabilities".

Not everyone thinks all the concern is warranted. Marcus Ranum, CSO of Tenable Network Security gave a keynote speech at the 2008 Hack In The Box conference in Kuala Lumpur entitled "Cyberwar is Bullsh*t". The title says it all, really. You can get the slides from the speech here (pdf).

Not everyone dismisses the threat though. Interesting commentary to Mr Ranum's contentions come from Richard Bejtlich's TaoSecurity blog, here.

For those interested, there are plenty of debates on the topic floating around the Internet. Thoughts, anyone?