Security from the Internet and other forms of information technology (IT) is becoming as pressing as physical security, if not more so. Physical security involves a given locale, but IT security can challenge vast systems. U.S.Defense Secretary Leon Panetta put it this way last week, according to In Homeland Security:
“The collected results of these attacks could be a cyber Pearl Harbor — an attack that would cause physical destruction and the loss of life. In fact, it would paralyze and shock the nation and create a new, profound sense of vulnerability. A cyber attack perpetrated by nation states or violent extremist groups could be as destructive as the terrorist attack of 9/11. Such a destructive cyber terrorist attack could paralyze the nation.”
Such dire technology portents aren’t necessarily new, but something in the IT realm has apparently caught Secretary Panetta’s attention big-time. Thus it’s time for every technology-using organization – and which one isn’t? – to enhance its own attention to IT security.