In the past week there has been a lot of media reporting on cyber attacks coming from Russia that are directed at Georgia. Some examples are John Markoff's story in the New York Times, or Siobhan Gorman's story in the Wall Street Journal. Others have been blogging about their experiences and many readers of our diaries have probably been called by local media outlets for comment.
Over the past years there have been a many of these "cyber wars" that infatuated the media. Remember the Great Chinese-American cyber war of 2001 following the downing of a Chinese fighter plane and a US spy plane? Also the Israeli-Palestinian cyber conflicts, the Indian-Pakistani sparing, Chinese-Taiwanese conflicts, and of course last year's episode with Estonia?
They seem to all follow a similar pattern:
In the case of Georgia I think that a new pattern is emerging:
I realize that I'm being very cynical here, and that the future prospects of real, no-kidding, nation-state cyber warfare are very possible. But folks, let's get real. Is a botnet or a website defacement an act of war? Is an overwhelming bunch of cyber tourists an act of war? I think not. But for the next few years I'm can predict with certainty that any time a physical-world invasion or conflict emerges that somebody will immediately go looking for the cyber angle. And they will find one, and they will undoubtedly call it a cyber war.
Marcus H. Sachs
Aug 16th 2008
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Aug 16th 2008
1 decade ago