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Embassy CyberSpy

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The discovery of GhostNet, the cyber spying network that spanned across 103, countries was a threshold event in the new age of cyber warfare and espionage. Can you even imagine if something like this would happen to a physical spy network where real human spies are involved?

With all the investigations, work and publicity, we still do not have any idea of how significant the damage is from this new age spying. We do know that GhostNet clearly shows just how unprepared many are to defend their secrets. Foreign embassies located in the United States are considered sovereign property and part of the country they represent. That makes the servers and computers that were housed and used inside those foreign embassies also property of that government. The hacking and attacks against those computer assets could be considered to be hostile acts against the government itself.

But consider this, the Internet communications cables that connect the embassies housed inside the United States are our property. Is it a U.S. crime to use those cables to steal information, electronically look and listen in via a web cam and computer microphone? The question everyone has to answer is -- where did the crime of espionage actually occur? The internet has blurred borders and questions of jurisdiction have been around as long as the Internet itself. Given the implications of cyber spying -- lawmakers need to figure this one out and quick.

-- Kevin Coleman

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