A group of former government officials has come together to warn that the US is not adequately prepared to handle a cyber attack on sensitive computer and power systems, according to a Bloomberg report. "We are skating toward a fall," said Stewart Baker, a Department of Homeland Security official under George W. Bush.
The group of policy experts, spanning all sides of the political spectrum, discussed the topic at the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington today. Former CIA director John McLaughlin said that American citizens themselves need to be more aware of the threat. McLaughlin said that the population needs to be "scared enough so when their member of Congress comes home, they say to him, 'What about this cyber thing?'"
The US has not seen any crippling attacks on its network system, and any potential threats have been taken care of long before they would be of concern to an ordinary American. However, it remains a popular topic of conversation for security analysts and terrorism experts.
"You need some sort of international agreement of what is permissible," said McLaughlin, who voiced the opinion that the most worrisome thing about cyber warfare right now is how little there is in terms of legal framework. The consensus appears to be that as long as the country is proactive in researching the threats and updating international policy, there will not be a "code red" scenario.
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