Friday, October 14, 2011

Welcome to the World of Cyber-Terror Vulnerability
Did you open your BlackBerry Wednesday or even Thursday morning and find – nothing? No new e-mails, or tweets. No new text messages. Just blackness and that familiar screen saver photo of your child, spouse or dog? Welcome to the world of cyber-terrorism vulnerability.

The mysterious, world-wide virus that crippled BlackBerrys this week and spread like the plague – more on that threat later – across crossing oceans and five continents may spell financial catastrophe for the struggling Research In Motion aka RIM, whose stock shares have lost 60 percent of their value since the start of the year.

An RIM spokesman has said that the outage was caused by what Security Week called “a core switch failure within RIM’s infrastructure,” and not by a deliberate disabling attack. But the outage highlights the threat that determined cyber-warriors could pose to the nation’s communications systems if they target them.

For over a decade cyber-experts have urged the U.S. to upgrade critical infrastructure to protect vital dams, power plants, and communications systems from cyber-crime or cyber-attacks from rival countries. But the country remains complacent and highly vulnerable, as the BlackBerry outage shows.

During a recent cyber-security summit in New York, numerous experts warned that cyber-attacks could not only cause billions of dollars in damage to such vital systems, but endanger national security.

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