Extortion: it’s not just for oppressive governments. According to the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, several power utilities outside the U.S. have received extortion demands, in which online attackers (perhaps with inside help) threaten to shut down power grids via internet-based attacks. Some attacks have been carried out, the CIA says, darkening entire regions. Information Week has the story.
Legal scholar Duncan Hollis addresses the legal implications of cross-border cybercrime, and the larger question of international conflicts played out via software, like the nationwide attack on Estonian computer networks last year. “War has entered the Information Age, and it’s time for international law to get a needed update,” he writes in the Los Angeles Times.