By Kelly Jackson Higgins
Dec 01, 2010
It has been a milestone week in cyberespionage developments that smacked
of a spy movie, with a confession, a killing, and a leaked intelligence
cable: Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad issued a statement that
"enemies" of Iran had successfully used software to disrupt centrifuges
in Iran's nuclear facility, Iran's top nuclear scientist was
assassinated, and a U.S. State Department cable obtained by WikiLeaks
suggested the Chinese government had ordered the Aurora attack against
While these events and disclosures fell short of providing actual proof
about the success or even who was really behind these high-profile
breaches, they punctuated what has been a game-changer of a year for
"It used to be that you got on the front page of Time or were on CNN
because you lost 20 million Social Security numbers. No one cares about
that anymore," says Nick Selby, managing director of Trident Risk
Management. "When a company loses a bunch of information about the
company and how it does business, that's the new 'CNN moment.'"
While the attacks on Google, Adobe, Intel, and other U.S. companies
earlier this year served as a big wake-up call to Corporate America, the
Stuxnet worm shook the SCADA and critical infrastructure industry with a
reality check that even physical equipment without Internet access isn't
immune to attack.
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