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Tuesday, 19th February 2008

Combating Enemies Online: State-Sponsored and Terrorist Use of the Internet

Combating Enemies Online: State-Sponsored and Terrorist Use of the Internet
Source: The Heritage Foundation

Even before the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, security experts were becoming increasingly concerned about the vulnerability of U.S. computer systems and associated infrastructure. The 9/11 attacks amplified these concerns.

Less attention, however, has been paid to state sponsors of illicit computer activity, which are increasingly using the Internet to conduct espionage, deny services to domestic and foreign audiences, and influence global opinion. In addition, insufficient focus has been given to how terrorists exploit the Internet as a tool for recruiting, fund raising, propa­ganda, and intelligence collection and use it to plan, coordinate, and control terrorist operations. Combat­ing these malicious activities on the Internet will require the cooperation of federal entities, as well as friendly and allied countries and the private sector.

Recent cyber initiatives show promise, but a more concerted national effort is required, particularly in acquiring commercial capabilities and services, man­aging military intelligence and information technol­ogy programs, and developing a corps of professional national security practitioners.


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