The Impact of a Cyber War

cyber war.jpgThe nation's top spy, Michael McConnell, Director of National Intelligence, thinks the threat of cyberarmageddon! is so great that the U.S. government should have unfettered and warrantless access to U.S. citizens' Google search histories, private e-mails and file transfers, in order to spot the cyberterrorists in our midst.

Like DNI, many believe we are either in the early stages of a cyber arms race or a global cyber war. Given the number of attacks we have seen this year, it would be difficult to argue with either statement. If indeed we are headed into a global cyber conflict, what would be the implications for the United States?

A cyber conflict differs greatly from what we typically associate with a war. There are no bombs bursting or gun fire. It is a silent conflict that is hard to notice until you try an electronic transaction. When we evaluate the progress of a war today we measure death and physical destruction. While there can be minor physical destruction in a cyber war, the political economic and financial implications are the primary measures of success.

The political fallout of a cyber attack will certainly be high, but this will pale in comparison to the financial and economic implication. The results of research on this topic conducted by Spy-Ops are listed below.

Physical Impact 1.2 Very LimitedSocial Impact 4.3 Very HighPolitical Impact 4.0 HighFinancial Impact 4.3 Very High

The financial and economic impact of a one day cyber war that disrupts U.S. credit and debit card transactions is estimated at being about $35 billion USD.

The United States is one of, if not the country most dependent on computers. Computers control our financial system, the traffic on streets, rail and in the air, and have become an integral part of our every day lives. In an all out cyber assault against the United States, the financial and economic, social and political implications could be greater that that felt by the 9/11 terrorist attacks.-- Kevin Coleman Show Full Article

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