What is happening to all this data — by now reaching petabytes as a whole — is still largely an open question. However, if even a fraction of it is used to build better competing products or beat a competitor at a key negotiation (due to having stolen the other team’s playbook), the loss represents a massive economic threat not just to individual companies and industries but to entire countries that face the prospect of decreased economic growth in a suddenly more competitive landscape and the loss of jobs in industries that lose out to unscrupulous competitors in another part of the world, not to mention the national security impact of the loss of sensitive intelligence or defense information. The interest in the information held at the Asian and Western national Olympic Committees, as well as the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the World Anti-Doping Agency in the lead-up and immediate follow-up to the 2008 Olympics was particularly intriguing and potentially pointed a finger at a state actor behind the intrusions, because there is likely no commercial benefit to be earned from such hacks. The presence of political non-profits, such as the a private western organization focused on promotion of democracy around the globe or U.S. national security think tank is also quite illuminating. Hacking the United Nations or the ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Secretariat is also not likely a motivation of a group interested only in economic gains.
Humans can almost always be exploited to create a security hole. This is why it is important to train users to spot social engineering tactics. I know I personally have taught my parents and spouse to spot these types of things.
Digital Warfare is what it is, plain and simple. I think that ~*"They"*~ have a huge head start on everyone else at this point. But now that it's a known situation, it will be a war of the minds from respective countries, from now on.
Yes, it sux that it's happening, but some people should be always be counted upon to take each and every advantage that they can conjure up.
We just have to realize that to them, the concept of 'unfair actions', or 'cheating' doesn't exist in their culture.
Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone you may still exist, but you have ceased to live.
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