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Customer reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
3.0 out of 5 stars

on 30 April 2011
This book is aimed at the policy makers and people setting direction in future approaches to cyber. A quote from page 170 related to Chinese cyber policy "losers in IW [information war] will not just be those with backward technology. They will also be those who lack command thinking and the ability to apply strategies".

This is exactly the same scope as the similarly titled Cyber War by Clark and Knake. Both books cover similar ground. This book is slightly more factual in explaining what has happened in cyberspace, providing examples covering many significant events from the last 10 years.

The beginning chapters focus on explaining cyber warfare and giving the background to current legislation. This can be very dry to read. I liked the suggested use of a 7 box model for assessing the importance of a specific attack. On page 151 there is a good overview of a zero day attack. This is frequently the living nightmare of network defence. This section in itself is worth reading.

I find this book repeats itself a fair bit and once you understand we are being attacked daily we really don't need to keep discussing it. The investigations into Russian and Chinese CNE activities are interesting. They do not go on to compare or suggest any positives or negatives of these approaches.

Towards the end of the book it starts to get more far out and wackey. Suggesting switching to Red Hat Linux operating systems, where did that come from? The comment that annoyed me most was in discussions of active defence techniques. "States that wish to avoid being the targets of active defence can easily do so; all they must do is fulfil their duty to prevent cyber attack". This is such an inaccurate statement because of the word "easily". We should consider that, as discussed within earlier chapters, countless attacks originate from within the US.

In conclusion I feel this book contains some useful information and is definitely worth reading if you don't have a good knowledge of the threats that are facing our computer networks. To quote from the product description: "A must-read for policy makers and leaders who need to understand the big-picture landscape of cyber war." The book is aimed at allowing people who don't understand the environment to make critical decisions with limited knowledge. This could be very dangerous. 3 stars, worth reading.
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