Parsing Cyberwar – Part 2: The Logistical Train

Summary: In the previous part of this series, Marcus Ranum dissected the various subtypes of cyberwar into four specializations: cybercriminals, cyberspies, cyberterrorists, and cyberwarriors, so that we could begin to compare and contrast the practical problems faced by each specialty. I paid particular attention to explaining which are strategic processes that require long-term planning and execution. Briefly, they break down as follows:

  1. Cybercriminal: tactical profit
  2. Cyberspy: strategic surreptitious
  3. Cyberterrorist: tactical high-profile
  4. Cyberwarrior: strategic destructive



Article deleted at author’s request.


(4)  Next Up in this series

In the next part, we will look at the agenda mis-alignment between subtypes of cyberwar, to better understand how they might interact in a strategic context. That will lead us to be able to assess whether there are any synergies (or mis-alignments) in defensive strategies that can be used to counter these threats.

Soon every nation will have one!

Parsing Cyberwar: the series

  1. The Battlefield
  2. The Logistical Train
  3. Synergies and Interference
  4. Patch #1 – Lessons from the Gauss malware
  5. The Best Defense is a Good Defense

(5)  For More Information

(a)  For a lengthy bibliography

See the FM Reference Page about Cyber-espionage and Cyber-war!

(b)  Some articles about cyberwar:

  1. Wikipedia entry on Huawei
  2. Global participation in the F-35 Lightning program, Lockheed Martin website
  3. Microsoft and China Announce Government Security Program Agreement, February 2003
  4. Chinese Hackers Stole Plans For New US Joint Strike Fighter, April 2010 — I’ve heard from credible sources that the data leak occurred through a non-US partner
  5. Microsoft Opens Source Code to Russian Secret Service, July 2010
  6. SIPRNET: Where America Stores Secret Cablesm, November 2010
  7. Samsung Makes More Than 1/4 Of the Parts In An iPhone, August 2011

(c)  Other articles by Marcus Ranum:

  1. Obama knows how to lead America by exploiting our fears,  5 June 2009 — About cyberwar
  2. Cyberwar: a Whole New Quagmire.  Part 1: The Pentagon Cyberstrategy, 2 September 2011
  3. “Do as I say, not as I do” shall be the whole of the law, 11 September 2011
  4. Conflating Threats, 14 September 2011
  5. About Stuxnet‏, the next generation of warfare?, 29 September 2011 – Introducing Stuxnet and some of the issues surrounding practical malware-based warfare.
  6. Cyberwar: a Whole New Quagmire – When the Drones Come To Roost, 8 October 2011
  7. About Attribution (identifying your attacker), 21 October 2011
  8. You must Be >this< Tall To Play Cyberwar (has DoD grown enough yet?), 16 December 2011



2 thoughts on “Parsing Cyberwar – Part 2: The Logistical Train”

  1. Pingback: Cyberwar – Marcus Ranum « ClearSky Cyberdefense Forum

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