What a great article. Of course General Hayden’s comments beg the question, how do you stop a criminal, if you can’t defend yourself? This really goes directly to the need to be able to respond to an immediate threat with a proportional use of force in self-defense. Of course, some will argue that it is illegal, and some will say that it invites retaliation, and others will continue the attribution arguments. I will point to the Network Use of Force Continuum, which indicates that if you are not appropriately defending your networks, then it is difficult to justify a more aggressive form of self defense.
From the article:
The fastest-growing cyber threat is from a kind of digital mass shooter, a deranged or outraged hacker able to obtain cyberweapons currently available only to nation-states and organized crime, a former senior U.S. intelligence official said Thursday.
“They’re just mad, they’re mad at the world,” said retired Air ForceGen. Michael Hayden. “They may have demands that you or I cannot understand.”
Mr. Hayden warned that within five years hackers “will acquire the [cyberattack] capabilities that we now associate with criminal gangs or nation states,” such as being able to conduct online sabotage of industrial control systems that run power plants, factories and utilities.
Thanks General Hayden! You set them up and we’ll keeping knocking them down, sir.