The IDF is ready to take on all cyber-challenges, and would survive any hacking attack directed at it, said the army's top computer officer Sunday. Although it is impossible to be prepared for every possibility – since new types of attacks are being created all the time – the IDF is “reasonably ready” to meet and defeat an attack by hackers.
According to experts, Israeli systems are attacked thousands of times a day, and hackers from all over the world – including Iran, Turkey, and Arab countries – are constantly trying to hack into government and defense web sites. Occasionally they succeed, as they did earlier in February, when a Syrian hacker group managed to hack its way into the mail server for Israeli newspaper Ha'aretz, and read confidential messages to staff.
Speaking on Voice of Israel public radio, General Uzi Moskowitz, head of the IDF's information technology department, said that the IDF was confident that even if attacked, hackers would not succeed in taking over or closing down computer systems. In recent months, he said, the IDF completed establishment of a special army anti-hacking unit, where soldiers are trained to identify and prevent an attack before it can do any damage.
The information technology unit was initially established about ten years ago, Moskowitz said, in order to ensure proper security levels for computers in the IDF and other security organizations and to provide encryption for important information, and to ensure smooth running of the IDF's electronic data systems.