Thursday, March 13, 2008

London e-crime conference suggests that hackers are becoming more organized and politically motivated

In the past several years, we've seen a lot of corporate and government systems compromised by hackers. With corporate systems, we assume the intent is financial, however more and more, we hear the term, "corporate espionage" being used. In the global economy, information is often worth more than money.

With regards to government systems being hacked, it's hard to speculate that the attack was financially motivated.

Mandy Clark of Voice of America wrote an interesting article on this subject, while covering an International e-crime congress in London:

British opposition lawmaker David Davis warned an e-crime conference in London that the danger of cyber terrorism is real.

"In America, hackers have already broken into the Pentagon's computer systems; in India, into government ministers' files; in Germany, into the chancellor's," Davis said. "Such attacks could be designed to compromise safety systems, critical national infrastructure, to overwhelm communication systems, or even to cause a run on the bank."

Included in the VOA article is a video containing a lot of commentary from experts from both the government and private sectors:

Cyber Threat report / Broadband - Download (WM)

Cyber Threat report / Broadband - Watch (WM)

Unfortunately, many consider this type of activity open to speculation, or point out that it might be mere propoganda. In the end -- IF this activity is caused by organized crime or those with more political intentions -- it's going to be hard to get the people behind it to comment.

Political misfits, criminals, spies and hackers normally want to keep their activity confidential because transparency often compromises whatever goal they are trying to achieve.

Nonetheless, a lot of experts and lay people agree that we are seeing more of this type of activity and that it is becoming a lot more sophisticated than it used to be.

VOA article by Mandy Clark, here.

United Press International covered this story from a NATO cyber warfare perspective, here.

1 comment:

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