Cyber silliness vs Cyber seriousness.

We see today the ever evolving use of computers in warfare and espionage. Governments run programs that range from monitoring of twitter accounts to all out viral assaults on a countries infrastructure.

We also have these agencies stepping into the entertainment side of computing. Americas Army (http://www.americasarmy.com/) has been a hugely popular game; this game features all of the units and technologies that a US serviceman would be familiar with. Some are of the opinion that this game is being used to glorify US conflicts and covertly implant the idea in the minds of the young that serving in military would be a good fun thing to do and just like the video game they have been playing.

A country that is of the stand point of saying no to child soldiers uses a game as a recruiting tool, that is a hairs width away from having armed children in the services.

Others have not missed the chance to get in on the computing propaganda boom. A strange story out of India has British author Salman Rushdie becoming part of an Iranian computer game!!

This game aims to educate the youth about the ‘sin’ committed by him.

The bizarre game, named ‘Stressful Life of Salman Rushdie and Implementation of his Verdict’, is being developed by the Islamic Association of Students, a government-sponsored organization. It has announced this week that it had completed the initial phases of production. Three years ago, the student association and Iran‘s National Foundation of Computer Games asked students to submit scripts for the game and the top three were handed over to video developers, The Guardian reports.

Rushdie was the target of a notorious Fatwa issued by Ayatollah Khomeini. According to the paper, little has been revealed about the game, but its title suggests players will be asked to implement Khomeini’s call for assassinating Salman Rushdie.

timesofindia.indiatimes.com

Then there are the more serious actions. Most recently we saw that computer security labs in Iran, Russia and Hungary had discovery a virus called ‘Flame’. This virus is said to be the most complex malware ever found. For over two years ‘Flame’ has been hard at work copying documents and recording audio, keystrokes, network traffic and Skype calls, as well as taking screenshots from infected computers. This data was then passed to command-and-control servers operated by its creators. And here is the really scary bit: in all that time, no security software raised the alarm. It managed to bypass the “signatures” databases of all the PC security companies.

Some sources say that this virus was the work of The United States and Israel, jointly developing the Flame virus with the purpose of collecting intelligence for a cyber-attack on Iran’s nuclear program.

Flame explained.

The ‘flame’ discovery was not the first time that the US has been caught using malicious programs such as this. A highly sophisticated computer worm that spread through Iran, Indonesia and India was built to destroy operations at one target: possibly Iran’s Bushehr nuclear reactor. Those who commissioned the malware Flame also created the deadly Stuxnet, say Kaspersky Labs, who have discovered an identical piece of code in both worms. What appeared to be two unrelated programs are probably part of the same cyberwar campaign.

Stuxnet explained.

flame-virus-cyber-war

So we see computers being used for the surreal to the serious, we see threats to national security and people’s privacy, we also see extreme measures of censorship and policing  trying to be implemented on the web, the question I have to ask is when does cyberwar become actual war?

We have rules for war and conflicts (as crazy as that seems) but what rules are in place for a cyberwar?

United Technologies sold military software to China: US

Texas Students Hijack a U.S. Government Drone in Midair

Free Speech Threatened: Who Should Control The Internet?

The New Proliferation: Cyber Weapons; or, the Internet is Tubes, its Tubes!

Flame virus, a powerful cyber espionage tool, can steal data and delete files

AMERICAN HYPOCRISY ON CYBER WARFARE & HUMAN RIGHTS

THE WORLD WITHOUT THE INTERNET – AN INFOGRAPHIC

Kaspersky Lab warns of Global Cyber Warfare, seeks Rules of Engagement

Internet as weapon

Satanic Verses

Weapons of Media Distortion: Cyber-Charlatanry and Your Mind

Cyberwar has now been declared: US and Israel at forefront

Cyberwar, new warfare against Iran

Geopolitics, Globalization, and Cyberspace

Napolitano: Executive order on cybersecurity is ‘close to completion’

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6 thoughts on “Cyber silliness vs Cyber seriousness.

  1. The triggering event to WWIII could be as early as October, according to Debka-Net-Weekly’sintelligence moles. Iran cannot be allowed to sell Iranian oil for any other currency other than the U.S. dollar—a fatal mistake Iraq’s Saddam Hussein made in his quest to lead the charge to undermine U.S. dollar hegemony in 2000.

    “It is already decided,” one Saudi prince told an unnamed European official, according to Debka-Net-Weekly. When asked by the ‘European’ if America will back out of the hatched plan to strike Iran, the prince said, “Anything can happen, of course. But this time we’re sure the American decision to attack is final and we are already making appropriate preparations.”

    However, according to the source, the prince doesn’t know if a strike on Iran will come before or after the elections in November. But, “the question now isn’t if the Americans will attack Iran, but when,” the prince said.Continued below.

    http://www.beaconequity.com/its-final-u-s-will-strike-iran-says-saudi-informant-2012-07-06/#ixzz1zuQlXTfp

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