Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Wired 14.10: Posts

Wired 14.10: Posts

I think people underrate just how integrated we are with computers today. Take a look at this article. Notice that in the scenario the actual attacks were one bomb, and a few well-placed hacks. The hospital's drug computer ended up incorrectly distributing drugs. The city was thrown in chaos. The infrastructure of warning systems and communication systems was clogged.

It strikes me that "cyberterrorism" is not about simply keeping an honest company from making a buck for a day. And it's not about keeping people from viewing their news or their porn or their YouTube video of the day.

One day, on The Tonight Show, Johnny Carson supposedly had a faux news item that there was a national shortage of toilet paper. The next day, so many people went shopping for toilet paper in response that there was... a national shortage of toilet paper. The media of Radio, TV and now the Internet amplifies. Colbert tells people to vote him the the winner of the Hungarian Bridge contest, and he wins. If some media event tells people to flush their toilets at exactly some time, and a fire is lit just a bit before, would there be a massive water shortage?

I'm all for technological innovation. I'm a geek. I want a house that is automated, and I want to start a company that gets bought by Google for billions, just like the next guy.

But I'm not exactly comfortable with some of the vulnerabilities we have.

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