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US at risk of 'full scale' cyber-attack by terrorists, warn intelligence experts

Washington, Sat, 10 Mar 2012 ANI

Washington, Mar 10(ANI): An eventual full-scale cyber-attack on the U.S. by a terrorist organization is "a certitude," and "cyberterrorists" are utilizing technology to steal money and move it around to finance their operations, a former senior intelligence official has warned.


The warning comes after FBI Director Robert Mueller rated technology-based threats among the most serious ones confronting the U.S.


"Certainly long term threat is by nation states who are finding new and ingenious ways to exfiltrate information. On the one hand developing new technology for any future conflict, or on the other hand enabling them to disable our technology during in a time of war," Fox News quoted Mueller, as telling the House Appropriations Committee.


Mueller told lawmakers that terrorists might perceive cyber-attacks as a winning strategy for circumventing the traditional post-9/11 security, which focuses on physical attacks.


He stressed on the need to devise stringent criminal penalties for those involved in stealing sensitive U.S. economic data.


"Our companies are targeted for insider information, and our universities and national laboratories are targeted for their research and development," he added.


Mueller also emphasized that cyber-attacks do not know borders.


"Our ability to work internationally is absolutely essential in order to address the cyber arena. We have strategically placed agents with our counterparts in countries like Romania, the Ukraine, Estonia and the like, where much of the activity takes place," he added.


Mueller's warnings took on greater urgency in the wake of the Senate briefing on the Obama administration's strategy for responding to a major cyberattack. (ANI)


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