Israeli cyber chief warns of 'new era' in cyber warfare

National Cyber Directorate chief says attempted Iranian cyberattack on Israel water systems was a 'turning point' in cyber warfare.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

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National Cyber Directorate chief Yigal Unna discussed Iran's attempted attack on Israel's water systems a month ago.

According to a report by Channel 12, Unna, speaking at a cybertech conference, did not mention Iran, but said the perpetrator of the attack was “not a cybercrime group but a state actor."

"The word 'speed' is not enough to describe the hectic pace at which things are happening in cyberspace," he explained. "We will remember last month as a turning point in the history of modern cyber wars. The attempt to attack Israel was coordinated and organized with the aim of damaging our humanitarian water system."

"If the attack had been successful, in the midst of the corona crisis we would have had to deal with a certain damage to the civilian population and even temporary water shortages, or a mix of chlorine or other chemicals at the wrong dosages that could have caused damage and disaster.”

The cyber chief said: "We are now preparing for the next stage that will eventually come. I fear this is just a sign of a new era in which cyberattacks are aimed at humanitarian purposes. If we thought there were lines that could not be crossed, then in this case all lines were crossed and may be crossed even more in the future."

"There seem to be new rules of cyber warfare - it can be cyber against cyber, or kinetic against cyber - and everything will build up to warfare aimed at harming civilians. Countries need to consider what is considered critical infrastructure and what the diamonds in the crown of the cyber realm of every country, for which they will deal with cyber defense, are, and manage the risks with the important systems that are not defined are critical, " Unna concluded.



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