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[ISN] Cyberwar isn't a grand struggle - it's a scary prospect of pure chaos


By Bobbie Johnson
The Guardian,
August 21 2008

When Russian tanks rolled into Georgia, it brought back memories of 
Soviet-era military conquest - a reminder of the cold war. But whether 
by accident or design, the fight for South Ossettia appears to have 
given us a taste of the future as well, with internet attacks on 
Georgian computer systems resulting in theories about 21st-century 
warfare spilling out everywhere. The BBC said the situation represented 
a "virtual echo of battles being fought on the ground", while 
Slate.com's Evgeny Morozov even enlisted as a Russian cybersoldier to 
see what was really happening. But while the past fortnight has seen 
plenty of conjecture, there's been very little hard evidence about the 
conflict that's taking place in cyberspace.

We do know a few things, though. After the military situation escalated, 
some prominent Georgian websites came under attack - though right now we 
cannot quite be sure where the strikes came from. We also know that the 
Georgian government enlisted the help of the regional experts in Estonia 
(themselves hardly bosom pals with Russia) as well as using the might of 
Google as a deterrent by shifting some important government websites on 
to Blogger.com.


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