The Next Phase in Cyber Warfare

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With each major technological leap forward in warfare the rules of war also change. Today’s challenge is Cyber Warfare, which has completely thrown out the conventional concept of the first strike. With tens of thousands of attacks occurring each day from all of the major players, we look at the landscape of cyber warfare and ask whether any nation can truly be prepared to defend itself.

Part 4: Free For All (1:01:12)

  • Bruce Schneier looks at the difference between cyberattacks and cyber warfare – the former we see every day, the latter we have not yet really seen.
  • We have yet to see warfare fully integrated with cyber capabilities – the closest we have really seen is Iraq, but the developments in cyber warfare since then are astronomical.
  • Schneier helps us understand what a cyber war might look like; the utter devastation that states are capable of wreaking upon each other.
  • Why are systems so vulnerable? We dive deep into what exactly a zero-day vulnerability means and looks like, and how vulnerabilities are discovered.
  • We look at why it is that so many little attacks are exchanged between states. Primarily, they seek to leave small bits of code or programs in waiting, to be activated or accessed if greater conflict does break out.
  • The US has a uniquely privatised security industry. We look at the double edged sword that this presents, by both enabling a strong industry of cybersecurity and cyber warfare experts, as well as making US infrastructure uniquely vulnerable.
  • Cyberweapons are unique in their democratisation; once used the code is out there, and can be reverse engineered and repurposed by innumerable other actors. We look at how this plays out for smaller players in the cyber warfare sphere, and whether the major players are holding back their real cards for when a serious conflict breaks out.

Categories: Audio, Recorded Interviews

Sidebar photo of Bruce Schneier by Joe MacInnis.