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Countermeasures to consider in the Combat against Cyberterrorism. Namosha Veerasamy and Dr. Marthie Grobler Council for Scientific and Industrial Research Pretoria, South Africa. Modern Urban Battles. The US and Iraq Middle East unrest Georgia and Russia Zimbabwe India and Pakistan

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slide1

Countermeasures to consider in the Combat against Cyberterrorism

Namosha Veerasamy and Dr. Marthie Grobler

Council for Scientific and Industrial Research

Pretoria, South Africa

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

modern urban battles
Modern Urban Battles
  • The US and Iraq
  • Middle East unrest
  • Georgia and Russia
  • Zimbabwe
  • India and Pakistan
  • China and Tibet

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

known terrorist groups
Known Terrorist Groups
  • Al Qaeda – Afghanistan
  • Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA), aka Euzkadi Ta Askatasuna- Spain
  • HAMAS (Islamic Resistance Movement)
  • Hezbollah aka Islamic Jihad-Liberation of Palestine
  • Irish Republican Army (IRA)- Ireland
  • Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) – Turkey
  • Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)-Sri Lanka
  • Revolutionary United Front (RUF) – Sierra Leone

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

introduction
Introduction
  • Convergance of fear-causing world of terrorism with abstract realm of cyberspace
  • Use technical security exploits
  • Stem from social, political and religious views
  • High-level view of countermeasures in the fight against terrorism

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

other definitions pollitt
Other definitions: Pollitt
  • “Cyberterrorism is the premeditated, politically motivated attack against information, computer systems, computer programs, and data which result in violence against noncombatant targets by sub national groups or clandestine agents “
  • Malicious use of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Infrastructure
  • Cause harm and distress

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

most cited definition from denning
Most cited definition from Denning:
  • “Cyberterrorism is the convergence of terrorism and cyberspace. …unlawful attacks and threats of attack against computers, networks, and the information stored …done to intimidate or coerce a government or its people in furtherance of political or social objectives. Further, to qualify a cyberterrorism, an attack should result in violence against persons or property, or at least cause enough harm to generate fear. Attacks that lead to death or bodily injury, explosions, plane crashes, water contamination, or severe economic loss would be examples. Serious attacks against critical infrastructures could be acts of cyberterrorism, depending on their impact. Attacks that disrupt nonessential services or that are mainly a costly nuisance would not.”

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorism
Types of Terrorism
  • Motivation: religious, political and social
  • Religious- theological beliefs
  • New Age- usually focus on one issue (eg animals)
  • Ethnonationalist separatist: establish new political order based on ethnic dominance
  • Revolutionary (Terrorism to the left):seize political power
  • Far-right extremist (Right- wing): certain people are inferior
  • “Cyberterror: Prospects and Implications,” published in August 1999 by the Center for the Study of Terrorism and Irregular Warfare at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in Monterey, California (2004)

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorists cont
Types of Terrorists (Cont…)
  • Religious/Theological beliefs
  • Strong quasi-religious fanatical elements for only total certainty of belief (or total moral relativism) provides justification for taking lives ¹
  • Certainly of belief that justifies the taking of lives
  • Fastest growing type
  • Unfocussed and target the masses
  • Sacrifice one’s life
  • Simple unstructured does not cause mass destruction
  • Advanced - structured offer rewards and comply with ideology
  • 1. Laqueur, W. (1996), "Postmodern Terrorism", Foreign Affairs, Vol. 75, pp. 24.

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorists cont1
Types of Terrorists (Cont…)
  • Etho-nationalist
  • Fighting to establish a new political order based on ethnic dominance/homogeneity. ²
  • Public recognition
  • Have shown violent tendencies but more targets of symbol of state like public facilities, government representatives
  • Rely on sympathy from community
  • Cyberterror attacks that cause interruptions: DoD
  • Use ICT for propaganda and gathering support
  • 2. Post, J.M. (2005), "The New Face of Terrorism: Socio-Cultural Foundations of Contemporary Terrorism", Behavioral Sciences & the Law, Vol. 23, No. 4, pp. 451-465.

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorists cont2
Types of Terrorists (Cont…)
  • Social-revolutionary
  • Terrorism of the left
  • Seek to overthrow the capitalist economic and social order 3
  • Change structures and rules
  • Focussed attacks on governments and corporations to protest against commercial and capitalist regimes
  • 3. Post, J.M. (2005), "The New Face of Terrorism: Socio-Cultural Foundations of Contemporary Terrorism", Behavioral Sciences & the Law, Vol. 23, No. 4, pp. 451-465.

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorists cont3
Types of Terrorists (Cont…)
  • New Age
  • The vulnerability of modern societies to unconventional attacks 4
  • Use violence when traditional forms of campaigning to not yield results sufficiently fast
  • Examples animal rights groups targeting pharmaceutical companies using arson and sabotage
  • Anti-abortion and environmental groups
  • Disrupt e-commerce and web-based advertising
  • 4. Gearson, J. (2002), "The Nature of Modern Terrorism", The Political Quarterly, Vol. 73, No. s1, pp. 7-24.

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

types of terrorists cont4
Types of Terrorists (Cont…)
  • Right Wing
  • Outsider” (eg. foreigners, ethnic and religious minorities) is targeted as well as state itself, as they are seen as ineffective or worse under the sway of the outsiders 5
  • Can be racist
  • Violence is acceptable form of demonstration
  • ICT for propaganda and disruption, selling survivalist gear or distribution of material
  • Strong psychological roots of superiority
  • 5. Michael, G. 2003, Confronting Right Wing Extremism and Terrorism in the USA, Routledge

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

considerations
Considerations
  • Gangs, tribes, religious and ethnic groups yield power
  • Blurred lines between civilian and military boundaries
  • Consider at a high-level how people’s opinions are shaped
  • Help show growth of insurgency in groups
  • Cyberterrorism merge of terrorism and technology
  • Countermeasures: psychological and technical perspectives

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

legal and political
Legal and Political
  • Major focus should be law enforcement and military response 1
  • Treaties, protocols, regulations and acts can ensures fair conduct of relations between nations
  • Laws can help promote acceptable forms of protest and consistent way of dealing with political and religious fanaticism

1 A.K. Cronin, "The diplomacy of counterterrorism lessons learned, ignored and disputed," International Research Group on Political Violence (IRGPV), pp. 1-8, 2002.

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

legal and political1
Legal and political
  • International presence eg. Interpol and Council of European Convention on Cyber Crime combating cyberterrorism
  • Military force to retaliate against attacks can also cause group to hide and conduct underground operations
  • No longer simple task to target hierarchical groups- geographically dispersed

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

fusion centres
Fusion Centres
  • Intelligence
  • cultural specialists
  • security personnel
  • linguists
  • political military specialists
  • engineers
  • psychological operations
  • media relations
  • economic advisors

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

humanitarian and peace keeping
Humanitarian and peace-keeping
  • Assistance to people suffering from famine, repressions, natural disasters and violence can help with conflict resolution
  • Favourable response from the provision of money, food, medicine, education, fuel and employment
  • Charity and education shows the effort to uplift the community

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

analysis
Analysis
  • Patterns
  • Links
  • Forensics
  • Cultural
  • Tribal
  • Religious
  • Communications linguistics
  • Intelligence gathering from fusion and cultural centres

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

technical countermeasures
Technical Countermeasures
  • Protective, detective and reactive
  • CSIRTs
  • Intrusion prevention
  • Network monitoring
  • Interception and blockage
  • Disaster Recovery
  • Forensics

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

csirts
CSIRTs
  • Computer Security Incident Response teams
  • Proactive: assistance with info to prepare and protect systems, technology watch
  • Detective: Identify attack patterns, audits
  • Reactive: Service announcements, incident handling

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

network monitoring
Network monitoring
  • Detective
  • Jan 2008, Bush signed directive to monitor Internet traffic on federal computers in response to large no. of attacks
  • Detection of suspicious behaviour: block web site, IP address or port

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

disaster recovery plan
Disaster Recovery Plan
  • Contact information for appropriate people
  • Critical devices
  • Procedures
  • Chain-of-command

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

forensics
Forensics
  • Cyberterrorism First Responders
  • Reactive to handle incident

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

slide27

Conclusion…

  • Cyberspace potential means through which terrorists could cause chaos
  • Affect psyche of communities
  • Underlying political, social, religious reasoning for violent and extremist behaviour
  • Summary of political, religious, legal, economic, social and technical issues to combat
  • Include countermeasures like laws, fusion centres, education, treaties, network monitoring and CSIRTs

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za

slide28

Discussion…

© CSIR 2006 www.csir.co.za