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Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It Hardcover – April 20, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
- Item Weight : 1.01 pounds
- Hardcover : 304 pages
- ISBN-13 : 978-0061962233
- ISBN-10 : 0061962236
- Dimensions : 1.02 x 6.46 x 9.36 inches
- Publisher : Ecco; First Edition (April 20, 2010)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,063,931 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Things I liked about the book:
The authors don't try to overload the reader with a lot of technical jargon trying to justify their position at the micro level of cyber security. Throughout the book, the authors use anecdotes and personal experiences to bring home THEIR point of view on the cyber threat to the US. I like this style of writing as I can relate to someone walking through their opinion forming process much easier than I can digest a litany of statistics and facts on a topic. Although, a healthy amount of that is critical to forming a valid, sound opinion (see my criticisms of this book). I did appreciate that the authors were trying to convey how they came to their current world view on the topic and what the Nation's leaders are facing in dealing with these challenges.
Things I didn't like about the book:
My criticisms of this book lie mostly in how little citation of recent examples (recent up to when the book was written, not 2015) was used in the book as support of the position of the authors. Much of the referenced facts and information provided in the book was pretty old, dating back to the late 80s and 90s, and the challenges that were faced back then (also included early 2000s). So much more has happened in this space since then, even up to when the book was written, that I felt that more discussion on recent findings would have been more warranted, as well as addressing some of the dissenting viewpoints out there to even further solidify their positions.
Also, citations of any facts are practically non-existent in this book. Much of the facts presented are in the form of, "I had a discussion with Mr. X one day" or "It was found at the XYZ conference that...", which wouldn't really hold much water in an academic setting (why I was reading the book in the first place). Still, setting that aside, you can take the book for what it is, accept their statements as their perspective on the topic and cross-check it with other sources that may or may not corroborate their findings. This book is entertaining to read, informational and definitely makes you think about the cyber challenges we face in not just the U.S., but the world as a whole.
Top reviews from other countries
I CANNOT stand READING... However, I seriously cannot wait to purchase Richard A Clark's next book - "The Fifth Domain: Defending Our Country, Our Companies, and Ourselves in the Age of Cyber Threats". If this next book is anything like its predecessor, I certainly would be over the moon.
I would recommend this to ANYONE. This book is not hard to read, and it gives great insight to the Cyber scenarios in the modern world, including several case studies.
Please... buy this now if you are on the fence. This relatively cheap book is worth every penny.
Can do more damage laptop than a squadron of bombers.
Accessible but authoritative
China espignoge stealing company secrtets
Airports, communications, traffic light, underground. National grid, power stations. Banks, stock exchanges.
Some basic background to the internet
The benefits to firms and companies of using it in the 1990s.
Logic bombs, hackers,
Resistance from private sector to regulation
Low cost, not designed for high tech systems in defence and banking.
Interesting point that hackers in Afghanistan could cause massive damage to the US
But there is no cyber targets for the US really to hit.
West may no longer have the cyber advantage.
This could deter use of military advantage if we thought there could be a blackout or our ships could be scrambled or switched off.
I found Cyber War a very well written book that was easy to read and understand. I am giving it 3 stars because it is more aimed at a political person than a technical one. Even so I would highly recommend it to anyone getting into the computer security or IT business.
The book does not use technical language and explains terms used in the text and in a glossary at the end. It is aimed at the non technical but could be required reading for anyone in the IT industry. There is good insight into the state sponsored attacks which are going on today. The threats faced by every organisation from advanced attackers need to be taken seriously. While this book does not claim to provide the solutions it should help to get the information to the real decision makers and budget holders within Government and large organisations.
The book begins with background on previous cyber attacks like the DDOS of Estonia and talks about how America wants to control cyber space. The end of chapter two narrates a (in my opinion) far fetched scenario in which the critical infrastructure of the USA is taken down. I think this is drawn form his previous experience in writing novels!
The authors broad background and view of international affairs allows him to draw comparisons to nuclear war planning which while I admit were similar were to 'out there' for anyone on the ground to influence. By halfway through the book I started to get pretty bored of the power grid and financial sector. I found that the recommendations given while reasonable were again to broad for anyone on the ground to implement.
In summary this quick read provides overview on the state of cyber space today and what may be done to start changing it for the better. Highly recommended.
So, despite the populist title and cover, it's worth reading by interested amateurs, computer scientists and students of International Relations alike.