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We are already in the middle of a major cyber war, experts believe

Hacker Hacker the use of the telephone in the dark (Credit: iStock)

A whopping 87 percent of the information security specialists are convinced that we are in the middle of a global cyber war.

That comes from Venafi, a company that offers technologies of large companies protect their networks against cybercrime. Venafi got opinions to express this feeling of more than 500 security professionals at the recent RSA conference in San Francisco.

Paul Nakasone, head of the U.S. Cyber Command, recently spoke about the increasing threat of a cyber war. “In the cyber domain…our opponents…continue to increase in sophistication, extent, intensity, volume, and speed, and remain a threat to our national security interests and economic well-being,” Nakasone said in a testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee last month.

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“It is clear that the security professionals feel attacked,” said Kevin Bocek, vice president of security strategy and threat intelligence at Venafi, in a statement.

In addition, 72 percent of security professionals believe nation-states should have the right to “hack back” by targeting cyber criminals who attack their infrastructure, and 58% believe that private organizations have the right to hack back, according to the Venafi survey.

Bocek added: “Today, private companies have no legal right to actively defend against cyber attacks.”

Currently, the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act prohibits many types of retaliatory cyber defense measures, including an attacker’s access to the computer without permission, according to Venafi.

That can be addressed according to the proposed Active Cyber Defense Security (ACDC) Act, which would allow individuals and companies to hack back.

ACDC would not be a panacea, however. “Even if these actions were legal…it is almost impossible to be sure about the attack attribution because attackers are adept in the use of a wide range of technologies to trick security professionals,” Bocek said.

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“For many organizations, it is better to focus on the creation of a stronger immune system,” he added.

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