11.04.13

Digital Dragon – Enter the Chinese Cyber Army

The Cold War ended, the Berlin Wall fell and no longer nuclear submarines prowl the waters of the oceans waiting to rain down nuclear Armageddon on our planet, or so they tell us. However, a new Cold War is unfolding in real and its consequences can be disastrous. This is a conflict between the rising superpower of China with the older superpower of the U.S.

Secret battle that is not held by spies, secret quotes and irreversibility of the Cold War, but by planting malicious emails, breaking firewalls and shutting down servers.

In recent years, China’s military is undergoing a process of “informization” during which it aims to achieve superior intelligence in any future combat scenario. During this process, the Chinese significantly upgrade the capabilities of their cyber warfare, and using every resource at their disposal : Apply first class software engineers, and hackers from “black hat” communities. China has also invested a fortune in the development of super-computers, and recently we were told that the Chinese Premier computer “Milky Way – 2” is the fastest of its kind in the world. According to the Chinese doctrine, information saturated battlefield will enable controlling both digital and kinetic warfare.

The U.S. seems to take this threat seriously. President Obama wrote a column last year in which he described a scenario of a cyber-attack theory, in which trains carrying hazardous materials are taken off tracks and power plants and water treatment plants are disabled. According to Obama, even though the U.S. has not yet been affected significantly from such attacks, foreign governments, criminal organizations and individuals are rummaging in the economic, energetic and government systems of the United States every day, and the source point of most traffic points to the government of the People’s Republic of China.

Like in real world battlefields that China participated, such as the Korean War to which the red power sent a million and half troops, the Chinese cyber giant is based mainly on a massive amount of troops and attacks rather than quality and sophistication. For example, some estimates a cyber-army of one hundred thousand regular soldiers and a study published last year even expands the assessment that China’s digital army estimated at half a million potential soldiers. According to the study, similar to the way the Chinese government recruited and drive millions of soldiers in the past, in a future cyber war there will be a “recruitment” of millions of users, in order to harness their digital fatal attack capabilities. Such a recruitment potential is enormous: up to 2015, there are expected to be in China about half a billion potential end users, which can be harnessed to the cybernetic defensive or offensive efforts.

As always, avoid opening suspicious emails from unknown sources. Viewing yet another cats video does not worth turning your computer into a spyware beacon in the struggle between East and West.