DNI: Data destruction a major cyber threat

Related Links

McConnell's speech

Malicious data destruction is one of the greatest cyber threats to the country’s stability, and preventing such attacks should be a top priority, said Mike McConnell, director of national intelligence.

The risk of hackers targeting financial transactions, transportation systems or electric power facilities for data-obliteration or data-scrambling attacks should be viewed as a bigger threat than the risk of other countries launching Web site-defacing or denial-of-service attacks, McConnell said Nov. 17 at the 2008 Military Communications Conference and Symposium in San Diego.

“We have come to the simple realization that data destruction is so much more important and a greater threat,” McConnell said. Other types of cyber attacks are also serious, but data-damage and data-obliteration attacks are akin to “destroying the data that’s the soft underbelly of what makes the nation function,” he added.

He said a data-scrambling cyber attack on a bank could devastate the bank and have a cascading negative effect on the economy as a whole.

The country’s defense efforts should include protection of banking, finance and transportation systems from cyber adversaries, McConnell said. That would include operations at the network level to quickly identity attacks and prepare defenses against them.

Featured

  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.