Cyber War and computer security experts are warning the U.S. Department of Defense and American defense companies to brace for even more Internet based espionage attacks in 2011. As in 2010, many of the attacks will target individuals and specific projects. Target organizations are urged to pay more attention to the social engineering aspect of many of these attacks.
For example, last year the U.S. Air Force conducted a test to see how effective their cyber-security training was. This was in the form of emailed offers to hire American airmen, stationed at an airbase on the Central Pacific island of Guam, as extras in the Transformers 3 movie. The results of this test were, well, sobering.
First, keep in mind that there was no Transformers 3 filming scheduled for Guam. The email was a fake, used to test how well airmen could detect hacker attempts to deceive military Internet users and get them to give up valuable information. The Transformers 3 email was a test to see how many airmen would fall for a “spear phishing” offensive.