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US sets up cyber war centres
The Times of India
Sunday 10 October 1999
US sets up cyber war centres
WASHINGTON: Pentagon has established new centres as part of preparation for cyber warfare to defend the US from hackers and to plot ways to attack the computer networks of America's enemies. US secretary of defence William Cohen described the new centres, inaugurated Friday, as answers to the newer threats faced by the US. ``We are stepping into the future, to deal with the kinds of threats we are likely to face from chemical, biological and even nuclear weapons,创 Cohen said.
The Pentagon established a new centre, headquartered at the Space Command in Colorado Springs, to defend the US from hackers and to plot ways to attack the computer networks of America's enemies.
``This is an acknowledgement that in the world where communication is critical, our ability to protect our systems and potentially get inside an adversary磗 system and after his decision, is critical,创 said General Henry S Shelton, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, on the occasion. He revealed the US had tried to mount electronic attacks on the Serbian computer networks during the air campaign against Yugoslavia. ``We only used our capability in a very limited degree,创 Shelton said.
Government officials disclosed over the summer, the New York Times noted, that US Intelligence was mounting computer attacks on foreign bank accounts held by President Slobodan Miloevic and other Serbian leaders, with the goal of draining their assets or alter banking records.
In future wars, US cyber warriors will try to disable air defence sytems, upset logistics and infect software through advances made by the Colorado Centre, a Pentagon official said. The new cyber centre, under General Richard Myers of the air force, will take over what is now a scattered series of operations. Admiral Harold W Gehman was put in charge of a centre at Norfolk, Virginia, which will coordinate military actions should an enemy target the US with biological, chemical or nuclear weapons. General Shelton told reporters that the new cyber centre in Colorado will have far-ranging responsibilities in future wars. He said that the Pentagon detected efforts to enter its computers by unauthorised people in the Kosovo campaign.
``In the last five years,创 said William Arkin, an expert on cyberwar, ``we have certainly seen a proliferation of information warfare organisations, and if this new centre will put all the focus and energies of the military in one place, then it is a big deal.创 (PTI)
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