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Analyst discusses cyber warfare

Analyst discusses cyber warfare
Analyst discusses cyber warfare

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By Tatiana Cooke,
The Dartmouth
April 30, 2009

Understanding China=E2=80=99s strategic approach to cyber warfare is essential 
to defending the United States from hackers, Timothy Thomas, an analyst 
at the Foreign Military Studies Office at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas, 
said in a lecture on Tuesday in the Haldeman Center. The anonymous 
nature of cyber attacks often complicates cyber defense, Thomas said in 
the lecture.

Cyber warfare is increasingly important in international relations, 
Thomas said. He explained that a large scale attack on U.S. 
infrastructure has the potential to affect everything from the country=E2=80=99s 
banking system to its military operations.

Thomas compared his work with cyber warfare to his previous work 
monitoring Russian intelligence in the Soviet Army Studies Office of the 
Army during the Cold War. Western countries did not know what actions 
the Soviet Union would take at that point, he said, just as current 
military strategists are unaware what to expect with regards to cyber 

It is difficult for governments to trace the source of a cyber security 
breach because attackers can route information through servers in 
several countries, Thomas said. Even when the country of origin is 
known, as with many attacks originating from China, it is impossible to 
determine whether the attacker was acting independently or in service of 
the country=E2=80=99s government.


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