Will cyberwar create new rules of engagement? And will there be a draft?

I read an interesting article on ReadWriteWeb yesterday entitled New Cyberwar Rules Of Engagement: Will The U.S. Draft Companies To Fight? by Brian Proffitt. In it, Proffitt reports on a speech given by CIA director Leon Panetta to business leaders in New York City last Thursday (Oct 11). Panetta discussed how for the first time…


Homeland Security, Cybercrime and terrorism, part 2

I started rambling in my previous post about the article in Forbes.  I had something else to say and I am adding it here.  The government and industry are changing.  Government used to have a laissez-faire attitude towards botnets and malware but now they realize that they need to partner together.  New initiatives have sprung…


According to the Department of Homeland Security, cybercrime is a bigger threat than terrorism

An article in Forbes the other day reports on US Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano’s comments that ‘cybercrime represents the “greatest threat and actual activity that we have seen aimed at the west and at the United States” in addition to “or other than Al Qaeda and Al Qaeda-related groups.”’  From Forbes: Addressing an…


White House announces anti-botnet initiative

I was reading yesterday that the White House has announced an anti-botnet initiative in order to further its online safety agenda. From Engadget: The White House has been drumming up momentum for tighter internet privacy laws for a while now, and today it’s furthering that online safety agenda with a new initiative for combating botnets….


US cyber czar Howard Schmidt resigns

The Washington Post reported a story this weekend about how the head of US cyber security Howard Schmidt is resigning from the post.  Schmidt’s resignation comes on the heels of FBI cybercrime director Shawn Henry resigning and going to work in private industry. From the WaPo: The White House’s cybersecurity coordinator said Thursday that he…


SOPA fears risk blocking new cyber-security bill

Building on my previous post about upcoming proposed cyber legislation, a couple of other articles appeared in the past couple of days that discuss the smaller likelihood of passing the bills because lawmakers are spooked that they may face another SOPA-style backlash.  From Mashable: Could CISCPA become the SOPA (the fourth bill I summarized, which…


Upcoming proposed cyber legislation

Yesterday I read the article Cybersecurity is entangled in Washington turf wars on Politico.  The article talked about how there are a lot of competing cyber security bills being proposed in Washington (D.C.) right now.  I thought the article was going to talk about the partisan squabbles that threatened to get in the way of…


Anonymous plans to go after DNS root servers. What will be the US’s response?

The other day on pastebin, snippets of an email conversation were posted with members of the hacking group Anonymous discussing plans to conduct DOS attacks against the Internet’s root name servers: To protest SOPA, Wallstreet, our irresponsible leaders and the beloved bankers who are starving the world for their own selfish needs out of sheer…


MegaUpload disrupted; Anonymous retaliates

In case you haven’t been following the news, the US Department of Justice seized the file-sharing site MegaUpload, taking its domain names, $50 million in assets, and coordinated with law enforcement officials in other countries to arrest key employees, as described by ars technica. MegaUpload, as the name suggests, is (was) a file-sharing site that…


My views on SOPA

During my 4-part series write up on SOPA, I approached it with a neutral tone.  I was hearing from everywhere that it was a horrible piece of legislation, but I wanted to find out for myself.  The goal was to look at it from the technical perspective and compare it to what’s going on today…


What is SOPA? And is it as bad as everyone says it is? Part 4

Continuing on in my series on SOPA, here are some more arguments that people make against the legislation. 3. Other countries will get mad at the United States if they pass this legislation and retaliate Does anyone really think that if we start blocking offshore sites arbitrarily, other countries won’t follow suit? The United States…


What is SOPA? And is it as bad as everyone says it is? Part 3

Critics have numerous complaints about SOPA. Here’s one that is designed to scare the daylights out of you: Holy Festivus! The United States is the next China, Iran and Syria! Here are a few of the complaints: 1. It will require deep packet inspection The exact requirements will depend on what the removal order says….


What is SOPA? And is it as bad as everyone says it is? Part 2

Continuing on from my previous post, the SOPA process is this: A website based in China hosts a bunch of illegally obtained, copyrighted material. Let’s assume that these are all movies, and the website is called “http://myfreemovies.cn. The A-record for this website is They make these movies available for free to anyone who logs…


What is SOPA? And is it as bad as everyone says it is? Part 1

Back in December, after I got back from New Zealand, I was off work for a week recovering from a medical procedure.  As I was browsing through my antispam RSS feeds, I came across SOPA and PIPA.  “Allo, wot’s dis?” I said in my New Zealand accent.  I did some reading about it and planned…


How Digital Detectives Deciphered Stuxnet – the Most Menacing Malware in History

This is a story that I missed when it was published last summer, but Wired has a great article about how the Stuxnet worm was discovered, analyzed, probable targets and probable authors.  If you’ve been following the e-security world for the past couple of years, none of this will be new to you, but I…