Tuesday, September 30, 2008

More Calls for U.S. Offensive Cyber Capabilities

The Washington Post reports on U.S. Representative Jim Langevin's (chairman of the House Homeland Security subcommittee on emerging threats, cybersecurity and science and technology and a member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence) call for the U.S. to develop an offensive cyber capability. Rep. Langevin sees this as a deterrence against potential attacks on U.S. systems. In order for the deterrence to be effective, he called for much of the Comprehensive National Cybersecurity Initiative (CNCI) to be declassified and for responsibility of cyber security to be taken away from the Department of Homeland Security.

The article also discusses some of the important issues in implementing an offensive capability, namely the identification of the motive and source of an attack:

"We have a tremendous amount of trouble determining attribution ... where an attack actually came from, who was responsible, who might have been behind that computer. And we have a very, very long way to go on that," commission member Paul Kurtz, a former White House cybersecurity official, told the House intelligence committee.

"Until we start to get clarity in that piece, it's going to be very difficult to contemplate the military option, of responding appropriately," Mr. Kurtz added."

U.S. urged to go on offense in cyberwar

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