Digital Conflict

By Kevin Coleman

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Kevin Coleman

Show of power might occur in near future

A 12-page cyber policy report by the Defense Department has received a lot of attention around the world. DOD prepared the report for Congress. In the document, DOD left no doubt that if the United States were to fall victim to a cyberattack, all mechanisms of response were on the table, including the use of kinetic weapons. This certainly follows the lead set earlier this year by now retired Gen. James Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs, who stated that a cyberattack that takes out the power grid might be responded to with a missile attack.

This is the latest exchange in the cyber war of words that continues to heat up on multiple fronts. One has to conclude that this is a warning after several successful cyberattacks, a few of which have made it into the mainstream media. Previously, we have fallen victim to cyberattacks and responded with great restraint given the substantive arsenal of advanced cyber weapons the United States military has at its disposal. As you might recall, earlier this year DOD stated that computer sabotage coming from another country can constitute an act of war.

A show of power is often a great deterrence and in the cyber domain it is no different. It is highly likely with all that is going on in the cyber domain, such a display will take place in the not too distant future.

Posted by Kevin Coleman on Dec 01, 2011 at 12:54 PM


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