Whether in the White House Situation Room or around the water cooler of cybersecurity companies, there can never be too many conversations about cyber deterrence. All too often though, the conversation fall into two traps: one focuses on theories and tropes from nuclear war while the other assumes the United States will be the one doing the deterring.
This new focus on AI is part of the US’s renewed drive to advance its at-home capabilities, to keep up with competitors, such as China and Russia. The news is somewhat of a change of heart from the Trump administration. Some members of the government had previously shown initial skepticism about the technology, which contrasted starkly with China’s full-throttle approach.
Cybersecurity experts are warning that a sophisticated Russia-linked hacking campaign has infected more devices than previously reported. Experts at Cisco’s threat intelligence arm Talos said their new findings reveal that the dangerous malware, dubbed VPNFilter, has not only compromised more routers in small or home offices, but it also has more capabilities than they had initially found.
It is a non-nuclear weapon that theoretically can hit any target around the world in one hour -- while evading the most modern of missile defense systems. The Russians on Wednesday paraded one in Red Square, and China is aggressively pursuing a development program for its own variant. In the race to develop hypersonic weapons, the Pentagon finds itself in an unfamiliar place: trailing its two main military rivals in a cutting-edge military technology and scrambling to catch up.
The U.S. will impose new economic sanctions on two-dozen Russian individuals and entities for cyberattacks in the U.S. and meddling in the 2016 election, senior national security officials said Thursday. The Treasury Department will target five entities and 19 individuals from Russia for actions ranging from the “destabilizing efforts” in the 2016 presidential election to the “NotPetya” malware attack, the costliest and most disruptive in history.
Independent and Western observers have not yet verified the claim. But the Russian program does exist. Last April, Almaz-Antey general designer Pavel Sozinov told Russian news agency Ria Novosti that Russian leadership had ordered the company to develop weapons that could interfere electronically with or achieve “direct functional destruction of those elements deployed in orbit.”
Russia used several American social media accounts in an attempt to disrupt U.S. energy markets, according to a House committee report released Thursday.
The discovery raises new questions about the nature of the company's effort to find and remove content produced by Russians trying to meddle in American politics, and how comprehensive it has been. The accounts and videos were removed only after CNN brought them to Twitter's attention on Wednesday. Twitter did not comment as to why it removed the accounts or why they had been allowed to remain live for so long.
The hackers known as Fancy Bear, who also intruded in the U.S. election, went after at least 87 people working on militarized drones, missiles, rockets, stealth fighter jets, cloud-computing platforms or other sensitive activities, the AP found. Employees at both small companies and defense giants like Lockheed Martin Corp., Raytheon Co., Boeing Co., Airbus Group and General Atomics were targeted by the hackers.
No one would call Russia’s government and budgetary bureaucracy particularly nimble, nor its defense industry particularly advanced. Certainly, it trails Western economies in such key areas as communication equipment, microelectronics, high-tech control systems, and other key technologies. But in certain aspects of the field of unmanned military systems, Russia may be inching ahead of its competition in designing and testing a wide variety of systems and conceptualizing their future use.