US took steps to reduce collateral damage from powerful cyber weapons

The Obama administration took considerable care to minimize the risks to U.S. computer security posed by its use of major cyber weapons against Iran and other Middle Eastern nations, say former military officials and government hackers, reports NextGov

Approval for the use of offensive cyber weapons such as Flame and Stuxnet must come from the U.S. president in his role as commander-in-chief, and the Defense Department and intelligence agencies are committed to respecting Americans' rights during such operations and of protecting individual privacy of communications on the Internet, according to government and industry sources quoted in the story.

Despite this, Microsoft suffered some collateral damage from Flame because the designers of the virus exploited a previously unknown flaw in the company’s digital certificates to disguise malicious code as a Microsoft product, the story said.

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