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[ISN] Thousands of cyber attacks each day on key utilities


By Jonathan Richards 
The Times
August 23, 2008

Computer networks controlling electricity supplies, telecommunications 
and banking are being attacked thousands of times a day in a new 
cyberwar against Britain waged by criminals and terrorists â some of 
them backed by foreign states â the Government has said.

Lord West of Spithead, the Security Minister, told The Times that a 
mixture of state-sponsored individuals âand those operating at a 
terrorist levelâ frequently tried to break into the key networks.

Intelligence organisations such as MI5 have given warning of the threat 
of state-sponsored âcyber-espionageâ from countries such as Russia and 
China, but this is thought to be the first time that the Government has 
quantified the extent of the threat to the nationâs networks, furthering 
the prospect of more widespread computer-based âwarfareâ.

âIf you take the whole gamut of threats, from state-sponsored 
organisations to industrial espionage, private individuals and 
malcontents, youâre talking about a remarkable number of attempted 
attacks on our system - Iâd say in the thousands,â Lord West said. âSome 
are spotted instantly - Others are much, much cleverer.â


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