The U.S. posture on cyber warfare is largely defensive, with military geeks focused on preventing and mitigating Internet-based attacks on critical infrastructure. John Arquilla, professor of defense analysis at the Naval Post Graduate School in Monterrey, California, believes Pentagon code-slingers should alter their focus somewhat and team with International white hat hackers to disable the war-making capabilities of nations preparing to go to fight.
The Federal Trade Commission this week announced new guidelines that would penalize bloggers for failing to disclose when they receive money for endorsing products. The fine could go as high as $11,000.
Some consumer groups pushed for the change, saying Internet users need to be aware of payments before trusting information on products like diets and financial services. Others are concerned the government is sticking its nose where it doesn’t belong.
Rival companies Google and Microsoft fight on many fronts — Internet search and advertising, for example, and operating systems. A newer battlefield is Southern California, where the companies are competing for a $7.25 million contract to provide email and office software for the City of Los Angeles.
The contract fight is significant because it could help determine whether upstart Google is ready for the big time when it comes to its cloud-based apps, according to David Sarno, business reporter for the Los Angeles Times.
In Wired magazine, Nicholas Thompson writes about system known as “Dead Hand.” It was designed by Soviet scientists in the mid 1980s to automatically retaliate against a nuclear strike from the U.S. Thompson reports that the purpose of Dead Hand, also known as Perimeter, was to make certain the USSR could hit back after being attacked, even if the Kremlin was destroyed. Thompson says Dead Hand still exists.
The chairman of the Federal Communications Commission is proposing new rules that would require Internet service providers to treat all Web content the same. Under the rules, which apply to both wired and wireless networks, operators would not be able to discriminate on how they handle Internet content or applications on their networks.
The worry over coordinated cyber attacks against U.S. computer systems from foreign enemies or terrorists has been larger than any damage that’s occurred so far, perhaps, but the bad guys are getting better and threats are growing, according to Massoud Amin, who heads a new Master’s program in security technologies at the University of Minnesota.
A recognized genius in mathematics, cryptography, and computer science, Alan Turing cracked German naval code in World War II, and is thought to be the father of modern computer science. Despite his achievements he was treated poorly in his home country of Great Britain, which prosecuted him for homosexual acts, which were illegal at the time. That treatment likely led to his suicide in 1954 at the age of 41.
John Graham-Cumming, a British computer programmer, believes Turing is owned an apology.
A study by the OpenNet Initiative, an Internet freedom group comprised of researchers from Harvard, Cambridge, Oxford and the University of Toronto, finds rising government censorship of online information in most of the 18 countries of the Middle East and North Africa.
Guest: Rob Faris, Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society