Tuesday, June 5, 2012

The Flame Cyber Espionage Attack: Five Questions We Should Ask


Last week, Kaspersky Lab announced the discovery of Flame, a malicious program with “complexity and functionality...exceed[ing] those of all other cyber menaces known to date.” Once installed on a computer, Flame conducts espionage using a bag of tricks including screen shots, recording of audio conversations, and network traffic monitoring. It is believed by some experts to be the work of a nation state, and has primarily been targeting systems in the Middle East. As a Kaspersky Lab representative explained in a Q&A, there “doesn’t seem to be any visible pattern re the kind of organizations targeted by Flame. Victims range from individuals to certain state-related organizations or educational institutions.”
This has added fuel to the ongoing debate regarding a possible international treaty banning cyberweapons. It’s an important topic that deserves proper consideration. But the publicity around Flame furnishes an opportunity to consider other cybersecurity questions as well. Here, in particular, are five worth asking:
More here: http://www.brookings.edu/research/opinions/2012/06/05-cyber-spy-villasenor

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