Foreign Policy Research Institute A Nation Must Think Before it Acts Understanding Cyberspace as a Battlefield

Understanding Cyberspace as a Battlefield

  • February 11, 2011
Lawrence Husick

Senior Fellow, FPRI

Cyberwar, as Richard Clarke recently explained to FPRI’s members, is the next great threat to national security. It is a threat to military capabilities, but even more so, to civilian systems and infrastructure. Cyberspace is likely to be the theater of our next war, and that war may already be underway. Because cyberwar weapons are computers, networks, routers and compilers, there are few who genuinely understand the battlefield, and fewer who understand the goals, strategies and tactics necessary to develop both an offensive capability and a defensive stance. Lawrence Husick, FPRI’s resident tech-geek, will discuss cyberwar in the context of value-based threat models. How can we identify the likely targets, evaluate the consequences of successful attacks, and implement a competent defense? More importantly, how likely is the US to actually do so?

Lawrence Husick is a Senior Fellow in the FPRI’s Center on Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism where he concentrates on the study of terrorist tactics and counterterrorism strategies, with a particular focus on technology leverage as a defining characteristic of the modern terrorist. He is also co-director of the FPRI Wachman Center’s Program on Teaching Innovation. His computer-related experience includes his work as co-founder and principal system architect of Infonautics Corporation (now HighBeam Research), which offers the Electric Library and on the World Wide Web, for which he has been awarded five U.S. patents. He serves as Chief Innovation Officer of TeraDisc, LLC, a pioneering company in the field of in silico drug research. He has been a consultant to both government and private organizations as a systems analyst and design engineer. He is a skilled programmer in computer languages ranging from assembler to Objective C, and designs and builds special-purpose computer hardware.

Download Link
Understanding Cyberspace as a Battlefield (Audio)