Information warfare, cyber warfare, are all terms that are becoming familiar for population all over the world. Every government is aware of the risks connected to the exposure to a cyber attack for sabotage or cyber espionage, due this reason military all over the world are creating dedicated cyber units to respond to new needs. The reality is that almost every government is working on the definition of cyber capabilities (e.g. Creation of a new generation of cyber weapons, development of active defense systems) also for offensive purposes, a cyber conflict has numerous advantage respect traditional offensives. A few days ago the Russian Government announced the creation of a dedicated breach for the Information warfare belonging to the Russian Armed Forces, its purpose is to improve cyber capabilities of the country exactly has many other governments are doing. Official military fonts revealed that the agency’s budget for 2013 is 2.3 billion rubles ($70 million).
“Cyber space is becoming our priority…the decision to create a cyber-security command and a new branch of the armed forces has already been made,” “We are working on the overall concept of the program to be developed in this area,” “We have reviewed 700 innovative projects so far,”declared Andrei Grigoryev, the head of the recently-created Foundation for Advanced Military Research, in an interview with Echo Moskvy radio.
The Foundation for Advanced Military Research is considered the equivalent of US DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) and was set up in 2012 to boost the improvement of Russian cyber capabilities development of advanced weaponry and help streamline the arms procurement process in Russia. According Andrei Grigoryev, the head of the recently-created Foundation for Advanced Military Research, the new unit will be composed by three main areas of military R&D:
The Russia isn’t the unique government that announced recently to boost its cyber structures, a few weeks ago was spread the news that the New Zealand Defense Force planned to spend $469 million for the creation of a new cyber army despite the meaningful cut to defense expense of the last years. The investment is considered important by security analysts, consider that today the Australian Army has no surveillance or reconnaissance systems.
It will be set up a new division under the Network Enabled Army initiative that will be specialized in the development of high technological equipment such as drones and robots as well as sensors that would monitor the location, the health and condition of soldiers and vehicles.
“The goal of the NEA Programme is to enhance the NZDF’s ability to support deployed land forces by improving its battlefield command and control system, communications and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance sensor systems.”
The Defense Force has invited technology suppliers to a briefing day at its Trentham military base, the Sydney Morning Herald program manager Colonel Phil Collett revealed the spending would be over 20 years.
Governments are getting ready for a new arms race, the cyberspace is the new battlefield and cyber weapons are entering in their arsenal near conventional weapons. Stuxnet spread has radically changed the perception of Information warfare, a conflict that is fought in the fifth domain, and that is pushing the producing of weaponized software on an industrial scale. This is considerably an historical moment, Information Warfare is assuming a fundamental importance for any government, leading powers are sustaining the arms race followed by many other countries that may be effective in the same way. We are in a situation similar to the one observed when nuclear weapon will ne used for first time … every government is trying to improve its cyber capabilities, they cannot be left behind!
Cyber weapons can potentially do serious damage to “critical infrastructures”, and in many cases weaponized tools are also freely available on the internet, cyber terrorists and state-sponsored hackers could exploit them to hit a government or a private business. Due this reason every government is working to the definition of a proper cyber strategy to mitigate cyber threats meanwhile principal organization are working to the definition of rules for the Information Warfare.
(Security Affairs – Information Warfare, cyber warfare)