Download Conquest in Cyberspace - National Security and Information by Martin C. Libicki PDF

By Martin C. Libicki

With billions of pcs in life, our on-line world, 'the digital international created after they are connected,' is related to be the recent medium of strength. laptop hackers working from anyplace can input our on-line world and take regulate of different people's pcs, stealing their details, corrupting their workings, and closing them down. smooth societies and militaries, either pervaded through desktops, are supposedly in danger. As Conquest in our on-line world explains, even though, info platforms and data itself are too simply conflated, and chronic mastery over the previous is hard to accomplish.

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But for more and more networks, there is no geographical perimeter as such. Connect something to the Internet and, as real-time pictures from the red planet revealed, it is accessible literally from as far away as Mars. That means that it is also accessible from caves in the mountains of Pakistan. True, physical proximity has its advantages; it does help in social engineering (the art of conniving people into giving up their passwords or revealing other systems secrets), dumpster diving (extracting valuable information from carelessly discarded garbage), or intercepting signals from wireless networks.

They do not react well to the unexpected – which is to say, conditions for which they are not specifically programmed. Small coding errors in software can lead to major vulnerabilities if defenders fail to notice them. The most fundamental defense is therefore solid software, but, in practice, users need to install defenses against the possibility – nay nearcertainty – that software is anything but solid. Three (among many) types of defenses may be noted. The first is access control; most systems use passwords but cryptographic access controls are far more resistant to attack.

By extension, the purpose of, say, conducting information warfare on a command-and-control apparatus is precisely to reduce the victim’s ability to command and control. The purpose of going after air defense radar is to reduce the ability of the radar to acquire, track, target, and engage aircraft. Attackers need not target any specific decision, although they might if they knew enough about what had to be decided. Attacking information therefore ought to influence the other side’s decision-making processing to one’s advantage: wrong decisions, late decisions, and decisions that, while perhaps good for the enemy, are also good for oneself (for example, the other side chooses to stop fighting).

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