Friday, August 31, 2007

Hack Attack

Maybe it's just me, but I have been freaked out by this Wired article on how Russian hackers - apparently operating with the Kremlin's authorization and probably its assistance - used a "cyberattack" to nearly destroy Estonia's IT infrastructure. It's an incredible story, seemingly out of science fiction, and yet it just happened a few months ago - and could happen again at any time.

Never before had an entire country been targeted on almost every digital front all at once, and never before had a government itself fought back. "The attacks were aimed at the essential electronic infrastructure of the Republic of Estonia," Aaviksoo tells me later. "All major commercial banks, telcos, media outlets, and name servers — the phone books of the Internet — felt the impact, and this affected the majority of the Estonian population. This was the first time that a botnet threatened the national security of an entire nation."

Welcome to Web War one.