Technology.am (July 26, 2009) — According to research, terrorists groups could soon use the internet to help set off a devastating nuclear attack. This may be an easier alternative for terrorist groups than building or acquiring a nuclear weapon or dirty bomb themselves.
Under the right circumstances, terrorists could break into computer systems and launch an attack on a nuclear state, claimed the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament (ICNND).
Cyber-terrorists could provoke a nuclear launch by spoofing early warning and identification systems or by degrading communications networks.
Hackers could also focus on feeding in false information further down the chain – or spreading fake information to officials in a carefully orchestrated strike.
Governments around the world have recently stepped up their commitment to increasing cyber-defence, after a number of high-profile incidents in which hackers launched attacks on foreign nations. Recent online conflicts, as well as reported attacks on government computer systems in the US, UK and elsewhere have increased the stakes.
In Britain, Gordon Brown recently announced plans to step up online intelligence operations – while in the US, President Obama has said he intends to appoint a cyber-security tsar to ensure that protecting America’s computer systems “will be a national security priority”.