NATO Faced with Rising Flood of Cyberattacks
Posted in: Legal, Privacy & Security at 27/04/2012 17:32
NATO cyberwarfare experts suspect that Chinese and Russian intelligence services are behind a recent uptick in cyberattacks against the Western alliance. SPIEGEL ONLINE has learned that NATO's cyberwarfare unit registers up to 30 such attacks each day. Employees have been warned to be on their guard.
The number of cyberattacks perpetrated against NATO is on the rise, say experts at alliance operational headquarters, with most of them apparently originating with intelligence services in Russia and China. "Each day, we are seeing up to 30 significant attacks on our digital networks or on individual computers, mostly by way of emails infected by spyware and sent to individual NATO employees," Lieutenant General Kurt Herrmann told SPIEGEL ONLINE on the sidelines of an informational seminar at the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) located in Mons, Belgium.
Herrmann heads up a unit of 120 NATO computer experts whose task is protecting sensitive data belonging to the alliance from cyberattacks. The unit, called the NATO Communication and Information Systems Services Agency, or NCSA for short, collects details on all attacks that target NATO information systems. It was founded in 2004, has been operational since 2005 and is to be further expanded next year. Two years ago, the NATO alliance officially identified the danger of cyberattack against member states as a strategic threat.