Shane Harris – Cyber warfare is the greatest threat to national security.
“Readers will squirm as they learn how every communications enterprise (Google, AT&T, Verizon, Facebook) cooperates with the national security establishment. Harris delivers a convincing account of the terrible cyber-disasters that loom, and the intrusive nature of the fight to prevent them.”
The United States military currently views cyberspace as the “fifth domain” of warfare (alongside land, air, sea, and space), and the Department of Defense, the National Security Agency, and the CIA all field teams of hackers who can, and do, launch computer virus strikes against enemy targets. In fact, U.S. hackers were crucial to our victory in Iraq. In this episode of Smart People Podcast, author and journalist Shane Harris takes us to the front lines of America’s new cyber war as we discuss his newest book, @War: The Rise of the Military-Internet Complex.
As recent revelations have shown, government agencies are joining with tech giants like Google and Facebook to collect vast amounts of information. The military has also formed a new alliance with tech and finance companies to patrol cyberspace, and Harris offers a deeper glimpse into this partnership than we have ever seen before. Finally, Harris explains what the new cyber security regime means for all of us, who spend our daily lives bound to the Internet — and are vulnerable to its dangers.
Shane Harris is a Sr. Intelligence and National Security Correspondent for The Daily Beast and an ASU Future of War Fellow at the New America Foundation. Prior to joining The Daily Beast, Shane was a senior writer at Foreign Policy magazine. He has also written for Washingtonian Magazine, the National Journal and Government Executive Magazine. Shane is the 2010 winner of the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Reporting on National Defense. He has been a finalist four times for the Livingston Awards for Young Journalists, which honor the best reporters in America under 35. He graduated from Wake Forest University with a B.A. in Politics in 1998.
“China is taking thousands and thousands of hackers working around the clock and trying to break into as many corporations and government agencies in the US as they possibly can.”
– Shane Harris
Quotes from Shane Harris:
“A persistent hacker who wants to get into someone’s computer system is going to get in. No system is impenetrable.”
“The military internet complex is an alliance between the military/intelligence agencies and a number of large corporations in the United States. This complex is about trying to defend cyberspace from malicious intruders.”
“In order for the US intelligence agencies to operate in cyberspace, they need the assistance and cooperation of certain large companies.”
What we learn in this episode:
- What are the origins of the military internet complex? What was the beginning of cyber warfare?
- What kind of data is the government allowed to gather and what protection do citizens have?
- What information are the Chinese targeting when they hack into corporate networks?