Is the best defense a strong offense in cybersecurity?

Summary: The US government appears to assume that -- as with nuclear war -- "the best defense is a strong offense" Cybersecurity expert Emilio Iasiello asks if this makes sense with cybersecurity, given the difficulty of identifying the attacker (attribution) and striking back at them (often amorphous non-state actors). Complacency in Cyberspace May Be Our Biggest … Continue reading Is the best defense a strong offense in cybersecurity?

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Will we repeat our mistakes in the Middle East & lose, or play defense & win?

Summary:  The West's post-9/11 wars in the Middle East have run down, but our involvement in Syria's civil war and the attacks by radical Islamists in American -- and the far larger Paris attacks -- have begun a new phase in this clash of civilizations. Before we attack, repeating the mistakes of the past 15 … Continue reading Will we repeat our mistakes in the Middle East & lose, or play defense & win?

After Paris: will we think first, or just repeat what’s already failed?

Summary: The call goes out just as it did after 9/11: kill, kill, kill -- more evidence that we've learned nothing from our expensive post-9/11 wars that have set the Middle East aflame. So we'll double down on stupid, testing to see if our great power can overcome our blindness, arrogance, and ignorance.  {1st of … Continue reading After Paris: will we think first, or just repeat what’s already failed?

The Cult of the offense returns: why we’re losing the long war, & how to win

Summary: We cannot escape history. It offers lessons to guide us. It's deployed as propaganda to mislead us. Successful strategy requires distinguishing between the two. Our long war, so far a series of defeats, provides examples of both. We can do better in the future if only we'd pay attention. "As we shall show, defense … Continue reading The Cult of the offense returns: why we’re losing the long war, & how to win

The Best Defense Is a Strong Defense. Never Fight a Land War in Cyberspace.

Summary: Why defense experts obsess about the relative advantages of different military hardware (e.g., the A-10 vs the F-35), the US has unleashed the tools of cyberwar on Iran. We can expect more in the future, begun by friends and foes. So let's learn the rules. Today Marcus Ranum explains the nature of attack and … Continue reading The Best Defense Is a Strong Defense. Never Fight a Land War in Cyberspace.

The US Army brings us back to the future, returning to WWI’s “cult of the offense”

Analogies are fudge, as TE Lawrence says.  Esp historical analogies, since every era is unique.  We use them anyway, mining the past for comparisons to help us better understand the present.  While analogies cannot be accurate (different times are incomparable), they can illustrate aspects of the present that we might otherwise overlook. This sketch looks at one … Continue reading The US Army brings us back to the future, returning to WWI’s “cult of the offense”