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John Arquilla on the New Challenge of Cyberwarfare – The Diplomat

T-Mobile is Warning that a data breach has exposed the names, date of birth, Social Security number and driver’s license/ID information of more than 40 million current, former or prospective customers who applied for credit with the company. Get Secured Now with Norton 360


As we move into the era of 5G networks and the Internet of Things, the challenges of keeping online systems safe and secure is growing ever-more daunting. In parallel, the question of cyberwar is looming larger and larger.

But this is not a new problem. John Arquilla, distinguished professor of defense analysis at the United States Naval Postgraduate School, originally coined the term “cyberwar” over 20 years ago and remains one of the world’s leading experts on the threats posed by cyber technologies to national security. His recent book, “Bitskrieg: The New Challenge of Cyberwarfare” discusses the state of cyberattacks and cybersecurity – and he finds the U.S. critically underprepared for the age of cyberwarfare.

In this interview, Arquilla discusses the future of cyberwar, the potential for cyber arms control, and how best to respond to cyberattacks.

You’ve been discussing cyberwar for 30 years — you even coined the term. But obviously the technologies involved, for both offense and defense, have evolved dramatically since the early 1990s. How has the cyberthreat landscape changed in the past few years, as the Internet of Things and 5G connections become the new normal?

Certainly the scale, pace, and complexity of cyber operations have increased exponentially since the early 1990s. And greater connectivity, especially of physical infrastructures built before the Web and the Net but now connected to them, makes them particularly vulnerable to disruptive malware and other, ever more subtle and hard to detect cyber weapons.

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What hasn’t changed, however, is the fact that attackers still have a considerable edge over defenders, which foretells a period of more active, destabilizing cyberwarfare.

Cyberwarfare is sometimes thought of as an alternative to traditional warfare, but it could be a powerful force booster in a real-world conflict. As you outline, we’ve already seen glimpses of this, for example, in U.S. operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Can you describe some of the ways cyber operations could be used alongside kinetic operations in a future war?

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John Wayne Airport back to normal after security incident forces evacuations

T-Mobile is Warning that a data breach has exposed the names, date of birth, Social Security number and driver’s license/ID information of more than 40 million current, former or prospective customers who applied for credit with the company. Get Secured Now with Norton 360


John Wayne Airport is back to normal after a security incident forced evacuations.

Travelers who were forced to evacuate are back to boarding their flights, according to the airport and passengers back on their seats.

Delays and cancellations are still expected for some travelers, the airport said.

Officials did not specify what prompted the security incident in the first place.

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John Anthony Smith: Russian Speaking REvil Group Is Actively Causing Widespread Cyber Terror

T-Mobile is Warning that a data breach has exposed the names, date of birth, Social Security number and driver’s license/ID information of more than 40 million current, former or prospective customers who applied for credit with the company. Get Secured Now with Norton 360


(John Anthony Smith, president of the fast-growing Conversant Group on the Southside, advises on Internet security after an attack by a Russian criminal gang on a U.S. pipeline company that caused many gas stations to run dry for several days).

Similar in some ways to the global SolarWinds breach that occurred last year, threat actors have once again breached another system used for monitoring, patching, and remote administration.[1]  On Friday, it became publicly known that Kaseya, a well-known player in Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) tools, had succumbed to a supply chain compromise.  Kaseya’s RMM, known as VSA, is commonly used by Managed Service Providers to manage, monitor, and patch their customers’ infrastructures. 

 

REvil Group was able to breach Kaseya’s VSA system and use that system to destroy backups and subsequently encrypt over 200 organizations’ data.  Kaseya VSA by the nature of how its system works has highly privileged access to the infrastructures in which it is deployed, as it is used to monitor, manage, and patch systems.  Thus, REvil was able to orchestrate this malicious attack nearly unthwarted by security controls.  On Friday, Kaseya sent out a warning of a potential attack and urged customers to shut down their servers running the service.  According to Kaseya’s web site, more than 40,000 organizations use their products.

 

REvil is demanding $50,000 in ransom from smaller companies and $5 million from larger ones.[2]  REvil is a Russian speaking hacking group that is highly active, and they are the same group of threat actors that successfully collected an $11 million ransom from JBS Meats.  It is widely believed that REvil operates from Russia, and this recent compromise comes on the heels of President Joe Biden’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva.  It is obvious that Biden’s conversation has invoked little action, at least thus far, in reigning in REvil’s continued attacks.

 

Ransomware attacks have spiked in the past 1.5 years with $412 million in ransom payments being paid last year alone, and…

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John McAfee, the Silicon Valley Entrepreneur Who Died in a Spanish Jail

T-Mobile is Warning that a data breach has exposed the names, date of birth, Social Security number and driver’s license/ID information of more than 40 million current, former or prospective customers who applied for credit with the company. Get Secured Now with Norton 360


John McAfee

made a fortune estimated at more than $100 million from antivirus software for computers in the early 1990s and then pursued an increasingly bizarre life of adventure and run-ins with legal authorities in the U.S., Central America and Europe.

“My personality is such I can’t do something halfway,” he told The Wall Street Journal in 2007. At the time, the entrepreneur was 61 years old and was then focused on his hobby of flying small, open-cockpit planes around the desert. Mr. McAfee’s legend continued to spread through his promotion of yoga and cryptocurrencies with unfiltered and sometimes sexually explicit and profanity-laden speech on social media and in interviews. He died Wednesday in a Spanish jail cell; authorities said his death was likely a suicide.

On Friday his wife,

Janice McAfee,

told reporters in Spain that John planned to appeal an extradition order to the U.S. in connection with federal tax-evasion charges, the Associated Press reported, and he told her Wednesday that “‘I love you and I will call you in the evening.’”

John David McAfee was born in England on Sept. 18, 1945, according to public records. He is widely reported to have been raised in Salem, Va., by an American father and a British mother.

A 2013 profile of him in Wired said his father worked as a road surveyor and his mother as a bank teller. The article quoted Mr. McAfee as saying his father was a heavy drinker and beat him and his mother severely. The father shot himself when John McAfee was 15, according to the Wired article, which quoted the software company founder as saying about his father: “Every relationship I have, he’s by my side; every mistrust, he is the negotiator of that mistrust.”

He graduated from Roanoke College in 1967 with a degree in mathematics. Over the next two decades, he worked for a variety of companies including

Lockheed Corp.

doing work involving computers and software. As a sideline, he operated a business called American Institute for Safe Sex Practices, one of several ventures that sold…

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