Information Warfare: Cyber War Becomes An Olympic Event

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August 20,2008:  During the current Olympics, U.S. military personnel trying to view the official Chinese Olympic web sites, using PCs connected to the Internet via military servers, found that these Chinese sites didn't exist. In fact, according to the military Internet access system, no Chinese (.cn) web sites existed. When reporters asked military officials about what was going on, they were told that it was Department of Defense policy not to comment on Internet security matters.

What is apparently going on is a Department of Defense effort to make it more difficult for Chinese hackers to get into U.S. military networks. This is because a hacker can booby trap a web site that will infect the PC of anyone visiting. Well, not anyone. Those with adequate protective software will get a warning that the site they are visiting is trying to infect their PC. But an unprotected OC is vulnerable. Although all Department of Defense PCs are supposed to be equipped with protection, with over five million PCs to watch over, some are vulnerable. So, without telling anyone, military access to all Chinese websites was cut. The thinking may have been that the Chinese would use the Olympics to try and infect vulnerable visitors, especially those  who could be identified as U.S. military PCs. In any event, neither Chinese or U.S. military Internet security officials will say anything.

 

 


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