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Cyberweapons and Iran

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    Cyberweapons and Iran

    Anyone following the use of the computer worm – nicknamed Stuxnet - [project code name Olympic Games] ?

    It literally had many of Iran’s nuclear centrifuges self destruct !

    Unfortunately the worm “escaped “ and infected computers worldwide.

    How many times have we heard this story before [e.g. real life and movies like Jurassic Park, Lost World, etc.] ?

    The good news is that if you were “ not” operating nuclear centrifuges, you were fine. But if you were ……………………..???

    ================================================== ===============

    Last week The New York Times reported it. “Confront and Conceal” is a new book on this topic by David Sanger their chief Washington Correspondent.

    I heard the interview of him by Terry Gross of WHYY-FM radio of Philadelphia, PA. She is a long time “top notch” interviewer on many “hot topics “ of the day. Just do a Google search.

    Pretty scary !

    Murphy’s law is still alive and well !

    Many of us in computing for decades can anticipate what may happen next – e.g. retaliation, more sophisticated worms, more tragedies, law of unintentional consequences, etc.

    As the famous saying goes – “once the genie is outside the box, you can never get it back in ! “ We saw this so well with respect to nuclear weapons decades ago and now with Iran and who else ?

    As they noted during the interview, the USA is most vulnerable to cyber attacks since we are so dependent on computing compared to many other countries. Check out one of Tom Clancy’s novels about what it does to Wall Street.

    Stay tuned ! It is going to be quite the ride as long as we continue to exist of course..

    All part of my STS – NSF [science, technology and society – National Science Foundation] research as so many of you know.

    Frank

    P.S.

    As the media notes, all part of Obama’s “Afghan Good Enough” strategy. Sounds much like Osborne’s “adequate is sufficient “ [see his book “Hypergrowth !”

    #2
    I've been following that. I especially like what the US Army Cyber Command operational attorney Robert Clark was saying. His opinion is that Stuxnet is not a cyber attack. He also wants to make it clear that we need a legal framework for this vocabulary. I'll say. Especially since the United States Strategic Command has since claimed ownership of the project. Exactly why the US is following this PR path will be an interesting story.

    After this turn of events I guess that malware is now a legitimate occupation. I laughed at the Reg article which asks "how to put 'Stuxnet author' on your CV".
    WANTED: Cardinal 2450MNP modem.

    Comment


      #3
      Screw 'em all. The US has had plenty of opportunities to demilitarize and join the world community. Now we've got a tigar by the tail and don't dare let go. It's only going to get worse.

      I remember a couple of CIA contacts that I met over 20 years ago taking pains to explain that the Agency's mission was intelligence, not warfare or enforcement. That's changed--and it's tragic.

      Now the Army's writing viruses. "Trust us", they say. That's after Stuxnet inadvertently "escaped".

      I figured it must have been a government operation. Flame should have tipped people off--who the hell but the government writes a 20MB virus?

      It gives me nightmares.
      Last edited by Chuck(G); June 7, 2012, 03:33 PM.
      Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

      Comment


        #4
        Hi
        There are two recent press articles that really disturb me. "Connecting the dots" leads to some very unsettling conclusions.

        http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics...be-act-of-war/

        http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/01/wo...inst-iran.html

        Scary stuff!

        Andrew Lynch

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Chuck(G) View Post
          Screw 'em all. The US has had plenty of opportunities to demilitarize and join the world community. Now we've got a tigar by the tail and don't dare let go. It's only going to get worse.

          I remember a couple of CIA contacts that I met over 20 years ago taking pains to explain that the Agency's mission was intelligence, not warfare or enforcement. That's changed--and it's tragic.

          Now the Army's writing viruses. "Trust us", they say. That's after Stuxnet inadvertently "escaped".

          I figured it must have been a government operation. Flame should have tipped people off--who the hell but the government writes a 20MB virus?

          It gives me nightmares.
          ". . . demilitarize and join the world community" ??? - like in park all the ships at the pier, ground the planes, and toss all of the weapons in the bay? I wonder how long it would take the average person to learn chinese and/or arabic.
          Surely not everyone was Kung-Fu fighting

          Comment


            #6
            I agree with Orange. The people we owe trillions of dollars to would jeopardize getting any return on their investment and wreck their own economies just because they hate our freedom so much. Now, let's surrender our personal freedoms to the Government, give trillions to military contractors, and drone strike some more women and children, lest the scary bogeymen get us.
            Searching for NEC Powermate SX/20 parts:
            KTN-8101/2 (NEC OP-410-8101) and KTN-8102P/2 (NEC OP-410-8102+ or OP-410-8103) memory boards

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Agent Orange View Post
              ". . . demilitarize and join the world community" ??? - like in park all the ships at the pier, ground the planes, and toss all of the weapons in the bay? I wonder how long it would take the average person to learn chinese and/or arabic.
              No, no. Demilitarize as in burn all thumb drives.

              Seriously, the Chinese have already won on this continent. ACTA is just a last ditch attempt to turn that around. (more here)
              WANTED: Cardinal 2450MNP modem.

              Comment


                #8
                Oh lovely, now we get to have the Cold War all over again, on the public's computers! And here I was feeling left out because I was born at the tail end of it.
                Computers: Amiga 1200, DEC VAXStation 4000/60, DEC MicroPDP-11/73
                Synthesizers: Roland JX-10/SH-09/MT-32/D-50, Yamaha DX7-II/V50/TX7/TG33/FB-01, Korg MS-20 Mini/ARP Odyssey/DW-8000/X5DR, Ensoniq SQ-80, E-mu Proteus/2, Moog Satellite, Oberheim SEM
                "'Legacy code' often differs from its suggested alternative by actually working and scaling." - Bjarne Stroustrup

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Agent Orange View Post
                  ". . . demilitarize and join the world community" ??? - like in park all the ships at the pier, ground the planes, and toss all of the weapons in the bay? I wonder how long it would take the average person to learn chinese and/or arabic.
                  Don't be fooled--the DoD is the world's largest employer, mostly contracting for stuff that winds up as scrap. It's estimated (ibecause of 'black ops" budgets) that we spend 53% (about $1.3T this year) of the Federal budget on military matters. If we were to cut that back, even by half, the economic consequences would probably destroy what little economy we have left.

                  Personally, I'd rather spend the $1.3T on domestic infrastructure, education, health care--you know, things that matter. If China wants Afghanistan, they can have it--they already own most of the mining leases there.

                  Enough politics, however. It just makes me angry.
                  Reach me: vcfblackhole _at_ protonmail dot com.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems just with potatoes.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by Ole Juul View Post
                      No, no. Demilitarize as in burn all thumb drives.

                      Seriously, the Chinese have already won on this continent. ACTA is just a last ditch attempt to turn that around. (more here)
                      Well Ole, I've done my part - gave up on Chop Suey 杂碎.
                      Surely not everyone was Kung-Fu fighting

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Agent Orange View Post
                        Well Ole, I've done my part - gave up on Chop Suey 杂碎.
                        They must make it differently where you live. I've never had a thumb drive in my Chop Suey.
                        WANTED: Cardinal 2450MNP modem.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Ole Juul View Post
                          They must make it differently where you live. I've never had a thumb drive in my Chop Suey.
                          I just gotta ask, have you ever had a thumb in your Chop Suey?
                          Surely not everyone was Kung-Fu fighting

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I'd eat there more often if I was getting free thumb drives with my meal. There's been a long and often off topic thread on this also on the full-disclosure mailing list (full of opinions by in/security folks).
                            Looking to acquire: IBM 5100, Altair 8800

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by barythrin View Post
                              There's been a long and often off topic thread on this also on the full-disclosure mailing list (full of opinions by in/security folks).
                              The funny thing is that the thumb drive was the actual piercing bullet in the Stuxnet affair. I don't know whether people are deliberately ignoring this attack vector of if they're too young to remember floppies.
                              WANTED: Cardinal 2450MNP modem.

                              Comment

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