US Threats of Cyber Attack in the Context of Elections and Cyberwar Games
WhoWhatWhy’s founder discusses the US government’s claims that Russian hacking is an attempt to interfere with US elections, as well as the wider use of cyberwarfare by other countries. We’re treading on dangerous ground, and more proof is needed.
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The US government is threatening Russia with a cyber attack because of alleged interference in the presidential election race. But in the 21st century — where reliance on the Internet is critical for complex societies, from how we get our news, to how we get our water and electricity — is the threat of cyber attack equivalent to a threat of war? Will cyberwarfare be the new means of fighting an updated Cold War?
Complicating the matter is the fact that the source of a cyber attack, whether against a government or private business, is often murky — shrouded in electronic haze. Internet connections can take circuitous routes all over the globe, because of their physically interconnected nature. Furthermore, sophisticated cyber attackers may hide their true geographical origin, sending signals to lead investigators astray. This aspect should give any forensic investigator pause.
How much of the current discussion is mere allegation? Before escalating an already tense relationship with Russia, shouldn’t the US instead have public hearings on these matters? WhoWhatWhy Editor-in-chief Russ Baker discussed this, and more, in a recent interview with RT news.