Israel's cyberwar center goes operational

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by SajeevJino, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Israel's cyberwar center goes operational


    Israel's military has inaugurated a cyberdefense control center as the Jewish state grapples with a sharp increase in cyberattacks, most of them supposedly from Iran.


    [​IMG]

    At the same time, Israel is amassing a multibillion-dollar arsenal of electronic weapons to use against the Islamic Republic in a largely covert campaign but which could come out of the shadows if Israel decides to launch pre-emptive strikes against Iran's contentious nuclear program.

    The Americans are increasingly concerned with China's cyberactivities, which they see a growing security threat to the nation's still highly vulnerable industrial and financial systems.

    But Israel's focus is almost entirely on Iran. The Jerusalem Post quoted a senior Israeli military source as saying there's been a dramatic rise in cyberattacks on the digital infrastructure of the armed forces and Iran's seen as the culprit.

    "The world of attacks is changing rapidly," he said as the new center, two years in the planning, became operational this month.

    "Few countries have this kind of defense ability," he noted. "This is part of the military's readiness to ensure continuity of conventional operations. This continuity is based on cybersecurity."

    The command center, operating round the clock, is manned at all times by 20 personnel but the source said that's likely to be insufficient in view of the ever-widening cyberthreats.

    "Two years ago, even my most pessimistic evaluations didn't lead me to believe we'd be facing the challenges we're seeing today," the military source told the Post. "Our enemies are not stupid. They're determined and want to cause harm wherever they can."

    So far as is known, Israel hasn't suffered major damage from a cyberattack but there are concerns, and the new highly classified cyberdefense center reflect this, that sooner or later the Iranians will succeed in delivering a critical blow to Israel.

    There's no real indication that the diplomatic deadlock between Iran and U.S.-led Western powers over Iran's nuclear program is anywhere near being broken. But there is a growing belief Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, despite all his huffing and puffing, is unlikely to launch threatened pre-emptive strikes against Iran in 2013.

    However, the Iranians can be expected to continue digital dirty tricks against the Jewish state, as well as the United States and its Persian Gulf allies whose energy industry got a whiff of Iran's growing cyber warfare capabilities in 2012 -- assaults that regional security experts fear may soon be repeated on a more damaging scale.

    The Islamic Republic, one of the world's top oil exporters when it's not battered by economic sanctions, has been steadily building up its cyberdefenses since its nuclear program was sabotaged in 2010 by the Windows-based Stuxnet computer worm, reportedly planted by the United States or Israel, or in a combined operation.

    "By the second half of 2014, things will be different," observed Financial Times analyst James Blitz.

    "The risk is that while diplomacy is blocked, the 'shadow war' between an increasingly fearful Israel and an increasingly beleaguered Iran gets worse."

    One area worth keeping an eye on, Blitz observed, "is cyber conflict, where both sides are increasingly active ...

    "In short, 2013 will be an edgy year ... Israel will not take military action against the Iranian program.

    "But it would be no surprise if both sides tried to gain an advantage over the other by covert means and especially in the realm of cyber conflict."

    In January, U.S. Air Force Gen. William Shelton warned that the Tehran regime has significantly boosted its cyber warfare program since the Stuxnet attack on the uranium enrichment center at Natanz in central Iran.

    Iran's official media claims that other nuclear facilities have also been hit by Stuxnet since then as part of the U.S.-Israeli effort to wreck Tehran's alleged plans to develop nuclear weapons.

    Shelton, who's head of the U.S. Air Force Space Command and oversees its cyberoperations, cautioned that Iran is a serious threat in the realm of cyberwarfare.

    "They're going to be a force to be reckoned with, with the potential capabilities they'll develop over the years and the potential threat they'll represent to the United States," he said.

    In mid-2012, Western intelligence sources estimated Tehran had spent $1 billion to upgrade its cyber capabilities.


    Israel moves cyberdefense control center online - UPI.com
     
    W.G.Ewald, drkrn, pack leader and 2 others like this.
  2.  
  3. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Cyberwar: Israel braces for 'MiniDuke'


    The Defense Ministry is urging Israeli companies to produce systems to bolster the country's cyberwar capabilities as it braces for attacks using new viruses.


    The Israeli Defense Ministry is urging Israeli companies to produce a new generation of systems to bolster the country's cyberwar capabilities as it braces for attacks using new viruses, including a particularly virulent malware known as "MiniDuke."

    Maj. Gen. Udi Shani, the ministry's director general, said this week that the ministry has established a cyber center to support the defense industry in coping with cyberthreats.

    The center will be run by the ministry's authority for the development of Weapons and Technological Infrastructure.

    "Our big challenge is the system," Shani said during the annual Herzliya Conference on regional security near Tel Aviv.

    "It's made up of data storage and products that are totally civilian, like laptops."

    Israel, which has the most advanced defense industry in the region and a cutting edge electronics sector, should develop its own state-of-the-art defense tools to cope with the wide range of cyberthreats that are emerging.

    "If we do this all in-house, we enter a new budget vector," Shani said, arguing that military supervision of manufacturing would help contain the emerging threats.

    Israel is particularly focused on Iran as its main cyberwar threat, and since 2009, possibly on conjunction with U.S. intelligence services, has been sabotaging the Islamic Republic's contentious nuclear program with crippling viruses like Stuxnet.

    Shani said that many Israeli military networks, such as the Ground Forces' Digital Ground Army System, use Windows and that many components incorporated in Israeli networks are manufactured abroad, which make these systems vulnerable.

    Underlining his concerns, Kaspersky Labs, a leading IT security company that uncovered several important viruses over the last couple of years, warned that Israel is one of 23 countries targeted by a new virus dubbed MiniDuke.

    The Moscow company said the virus penetrates Adobe Reader PDF files to install a new, highly customized malware in computers.

    Kaspersky said MiniDuke had been used in recent weeks to attacks dozens of servers in government organizations and institutions around the world. Among the countries hit were the United States, Belgium, Portugal, Ukraine, Romania, the Czech Republic, Hungary and Ireland via servers in Panama and Turkey.

    Eugene Kaspersky, the security company's founder and chief executive officer, said the operations ranked as some of the most sophisticated cyberattacks he had observed in some time.

    "This is a very unusual cyberattack," he said. "I remember this style of malicious programming from the end of the 1990s and the beginning of the 2000s ...

    "The combination of experienced old school malware writers using newly discovered exploits and clever social engineering to compromise high-profile targets is extremely dangerous."

    Israel and Iran are seen as two increasingly active cyber powers. The Financial Times reported in February that the Islamic Republic "is being seen by the U.S. as an increasingly capable actor in cyber offensive weaponry."

    Gen. William Shelton, head of the U.S. Air Force Space Command who also oversees its cyber operations, said in 2012 that Iran "will be a force to be reckoned with" in the cyber battlefield.

    He said Tehran has significantly boosted its cyber warfare program since the first Stuxnet attack in 2009 on the uranium enrichment center at Natanz in central Iran.

    Israel has threatened to launch pre-emptive strikes against Iran's nuclear network, but has been restrained by the Americans.

    The general belief is that Israel is unlikely to take military action against Iran in 2013. But," the Financial Times noted, "it would be no surprise if both sides tried to gain an advantage over the other by covert means, and especially in the realm of cyber conflict."

    In February, the Israeli military inaugurated a cyberdefense control center after two years of planning, part of the cyber infrastructure it is constructing.

    Israel has been amassing a multibillion-dollar arsenal of electronic weapons to use against the Islamic Republic in a largely covert campaign but which could come out of the shadows if Israel decides to launch pre-emptive strikes against Iran's nuclear program.

    "The world of attacks is changing rapidly," a senior Israeli officer told The Jerusalem Post.

    But he said few countries have Israel's "kind of defense ability. This is part of the military's readiness to ensure continuity of conventional operations. This continuity is based on cybersecurity."

    Israeli Defense Ministry warns of cyberwar - UPI.com
     
    W.G.Ewald likes this.
  4. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Oplsrael: Israel Prepares to Confront 'Largest Cyber Attack in History' led by Anonymous


    Israel is honing its cyber defence system for an attack which hackers claim will be the largest in the history of the internet.Hackers across the world, spearheaded by the hackivist group Anonymous, are planning to unleash a massive attack on Israel later this week, according to reports.


    [​IMG]

    The launch, codenamed 'Oplsrael', is scheduled to strike Israeli networks on 7 April - Holocaust Remembrance Day.

    The hackers are aiming to paralyse at least 100 Israeli websites, including those belonging to banks and communication firms.

    In addition to a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack, similar to the recent worldwide attack, the assailants are expected to install malicious software in the targeted websites.

    'Mauritania Attacker,' who heads a team of hackers called AnonGhost, told The Hackers Post: "The hacking teams have decided to unite against Israel as one entity, and Israel should be getting prepared to be 'erased' from the Internet. It's going to be the biggest-ever operation launched against any country, it's going to be huge."

    Ofir Ben Avi, director of Accessible Government Online Systems, told Haaretz: "What distinguishes this plan when compared to previous attacks is that it really seems to be organised by Anonymous-affiliated groups from around the world in what looks like a joining of forces.

    "We are following this and are preparing for April 7th."

    Top Israeli firms have advised users not to access the threatened websites. However, Shai Blitzblau, CEO of Israel's Maglan Information Defence Technologies Research, told Hebrew daily Israel Hayom that the hackers' skills had not reached sufficient levels of ability.

    During the Israel-Gaza conflict in November, Anonymous launched a similar attack on Israel, telling the Jewish state that it was "too late to expect us".



    Oplsrael: Israel Prepares to Confront 'Largest Cyber Attack in History' led by Anonymous - IBTimes UK



     
    W.G.Ewald likes this.
  5. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Anonymous launches massive cyber assault on Israel


    Hacktivist group Anonymous has launched a second massive cyber attack against Israel, dubbed #OpIsrael. The collective threatens to "disrupt and erase Israel from cyberspace" .


    Dozens of Israeli websites were unavailable as of early Sunday.

    In the statement released Saturday, an Anonymous affiliated group identifying itself as The N4m3le55 cr3w announce they “have gathered 600 websites and 100 plus servers we will be attacking” throughout Israel. The list includes banks, schools, businesses and a host of prominent government websites.

    “That is just our targets,” the group warns. “We cannot speak on what the rest of Anonymous will be attacking but we can guarantee it will be in the 1000′s.”

    They further accused former Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman and Minister of Finance Yair Lapid Finance of bringing “great shame to Israel.”

    “Expect us to have great lulz Avigdor Liberman and Yair Lapid, especially on social networks,” the statement reads.

    Anonymous launches massive cyber assault on Israel — RT News
     
    W.G.Ewald likes this.
  6. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Hackers threaten to 'wipe Israel off Internet map' in massive cyber attack


    Some 19,000 Israeli Facebook accounts have been reportedly attacked by hackers affiliated with Anonymous group; hackers threaten to wage 'the largest Internet battle in the history of mankind.'

    Hackers vowing to "wipe Israel off the map of the Internet" officially launched a new round of cyber attacks on Israeli sites on Saturday afternoon, just as a new day dawned in Australia. Hackers around the world have been organizing to target Israel in a mass cyber attack on Sunday, April 7.

    Hackers threaten to 'wipe Israel off Internet map' in massive cyber attack - Diplomacy & Defense - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
     
    W.G.Ewald likes this.
  7. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Hackers threaten to 'wipe Israel off Internet map' in massive cyber attack


    Some 19,000 Israeli Facebook accounts have been reportedly attacked by hackers affiliated with Anonymous group; hackers threaten to wage 'the largest Internet battle in the history of mankind.'

    Hackers vowing to "wipe Israel off the map of the Internet" officially launched a new round of cyber attacks on Israeli sites on Saturday afternoon, just as a new day dawned in Australia. Hackers around the world have been organizing to target Israel in a mass cyber attack on Sunday, April 7.

    Hackers threaten to 'wipe Israel off Internet map' in massive cyber attack - Diplomacy & Defense - Israel News | Haaretz Daily Newspaper
     
    W.G.Ewald likes this.
  8. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Israelis warned infrastructure open to cyberstrikes


    Israel's economic infrastructure, such as financial institutions, water companies, food factories and pharmaceutical manufacturers are wide open to cyber attack and need to take urgent steps to protect their computer systems, a leading think tank has warned.


    Scores of these civilian targets constitute Israel's "soft underbelly" since they are not covered by government efforts to protect critical infrastructure, including military and security installations, says Gabi Siboni, program director of the Institute for National Security Studies' cyberwarfare program.

    "Cyberdefense in the civilian arena is not being dealt with, in contrast to the defense sector, including defense industries, and scores of critical national infrastructures which receive regular guidelines on the issue from government departments," he told the business daily Globes.

    "But telecommunications carriers, including Internet service providers and other entities with systems, which, if attacked, are liable to substantially disrupt service to a large clientele, are not defined by the government as critical infrastructures, and there's no authority [that] directs them how to prepare against a possible cyberattack.

    "While dozens of critical national infrastructures are protected, someone deciding on an attack will prefer to focus his efforts on the soft underbelly, against those who are unprotected," Siboni said.

    "The target could be the water company of a large city. Today, water companies and critical entities in the economy are not protected for such a situation because no one demands that they should be prepared."

    Siboni's warning, which he will present at an INSS conference this week on the financial industry's preparedness for a cyberstrikes, comes amid major efforts by U.S., European and other governments to erect cyberdefenses around a comprehensive range of critical civilian infrastructure as the danger of crippling cyberattacks grows.

    Recent disclosures of extensive electronic eavesdropping by U.S. intelligence on agencies of the European Union and other allies, including diplomatic missions, have heightened international concerns about the perils of cyberattacks.

    The Financial Times said last week Europe "should transform itself into a data protection fortress."

    Israel, which along with the United States has engaged Iran in an ongoing cyberwar largely aimed at sabotaging Tehran's nuclear program, has been in the forefront of building up cyberdefenses as the Iranians have struck back.

    Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has sought to accelerate the construction of these defenses, and says the Jewish state is hit by hundreds of cyberstrikes every month.

    On May 25, Israeli officials disclosed there had been a failed attack two weeks earlier on the water system in the northern city of Haifa, a major port and naval base. They said the attack originated in Syria in apparent retaliation for an Israeli airstrike earlier that month.

    Yitzhak Ben-Yisrael, chairman of the National Council for Research and Development, said critical Israeli infrastructure such as the electricity and water industries and the stock exchange undergo hundreds of cyberattacks every week.

    "The number of cyberattacks is huge," he said. "We're talking about an attack every moment. We have to constantly think about the upcoming threats."

    In June, Netanyahu reported "a significant increase in the scope of cyberattacks on Israel by Iran. ... The targets are our vital national systems.

    "In effect, aside from electricity, water, the railways and banks, every area that's open in economic life, not to mention defense, is a potential target for cyberattacks."

    Netanyahu's previous government established a national cybercenter to help coordinate with the military and intelligence services to counter cyberattacks.

    "Today, cyber is part of the battlefield," he declared. "This is not tomorrow's warfare -- it's already here today."


    Israelis warned infrastructure open to cyberstrikes - UPI.com
     
  9. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Israel reportedly thwarts cyber attack from China


    140 targets in defense, security industries receive Trojan-infested email seeking to steal information, according to Channel 2


    Several weeks ago, some 140 senior figures across Israel’s leading security and defense industries received an email from a known German company in the field which turned out to contain a Trojan-horse virus, a form of malware instructed to copy information back to the source. The recipients included project managers and supervisors of highly sensitive, and even classified, projects.

    The industries’ various defense systems identified the threat and shut it down, Channel 2 reported. An initial investigation uncovered the large number of people targeted in the field, while an additional check revealed that the sources of the threat were Chinese defense industries.

    Operating procedures across the industries have been clarified to prevent any such incidents in the future, according to the report.

    Earlier Sunday, an Associated Press report revealed a month ago, a major artery in Israel’s national road network in the northern city of Haifa suffered a cyber-attack, knocking key operations out of commission two days in a row and causing hundreds of thousands of dollars in damage.

    One expert, speaking on condition of anonymity because the breach of security was a classified matter, said a Trojan-horse attack targeted the security camera apparatus in the Carmel tunnels toll road on September 8.

    The attack caused an immediate 20-minute lockdown of the roadway. The next day, the expert said, it shut down the roadway again during morning rush hour. It remained shut for eight hours, causing massive congestion.

    The expert said investigators believe the attack was the work of unknown, sophisticated hackers, similar to the Anonymous hacking group that led attacks on Israeli websites in April. He said investigators determined it was not sophisticated enough to be the work of an enemy government like Iran.

    In July, the Knesset fended off a severe cyber attack on the parliament’s computer system

    Concerted hacking attempts are not new to Israel, nor is cybersecurity.

    “We are aiming to build a ‘digital Iron Dome,’” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in June. “This requires us to always stay one step ahead of our enemies, in an unending competition.”

    The same month, Iran claimed that its hackers, members of the Syrian Electronic Army group, had broken into secure servers at Haifa Port — a claim that was dismissed by Israel when it was first raised.

    “In recent months, we have identified a significant growth in the scope of cyber-attacks by Iran against Israel,” Netanyahu said at a June event sponsored by Tel Aviv University’s Yuval Ne’eman Workshop on Technology and Security. “These attacks are being conducted by Iran and its surrogates, Hezbollah and Hamas. Their targets are, of course, major systems and infrastructure, including electrical systems and water systems. But all areas of civilian life, as well as defense systems, are being targeted as well.

    And this trend will continue as we progress during the digital age,” added Netanyahu

    Israel reportedly thwarts cyber attack from China | The Times of Israel
     
    W.G.Ewald and drkrn like this.
  10. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,656
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    Looks Like Chinese want Some Israeli defence Tech such as Iron Dome and Arrow Systems
     
  11. kseeker

    kseeker Retired

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2013
    Messages:
    2,515
    Likes Received:
    2,111
    Location:
    Bharatvarsh
    Not surprising.

    Chini :flypig:s want everything which are considered high tech, which they cannot produce indigenously. Easy option is stealing ! which they have been doing it for past 6 decades !
     
  12. W.G.Ewald

    W.G.Ewald Defence Professionals/ DFI member of 2 Defence Professionals

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2011
    Messages:
    14,140
    Likes Received:
    8,528
    Location:
    North Carolina, USA
    SajeevJino likes this.

Share This Page