The nation’s cities, regions and states are all connected to the internet through the water, electric and telecom infrastructure. The damage an attack on this system could have should not to be understated, security experts say.
During the Cold War, the nature of the threat and the assets requiring protection were clearly stated, according to Ron Ross, a fellow at the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The threat was nuclear, the asset was the nation. Now, in the realm of cyber, that clarity has all but gone away, Ross said.
“We think of cyber as invisible,” Ross said on a media panel at the Nov. 3 Capital Cybersecurity Summit. “We are totally dependent on these computing technologies, and they’re being distributed in every aspect of critical infrastructure,” he said. “We are flying blind. That’s dangerous.”