If you’ve been worrying about our vulnerability to overseas cyber attacks, then you need to read this article from the Economic Warfare Institute blog by Stewart Baker.
A senior official in the Bush administration’s Department of Homeland Security, Baker shows how experts can identify hackers. It turns out it’s easier than you think:
it is not possible to operate in cyberspace these days without leaving little digital bits of your DNA all over cyberspace.
Finding the origination, or attribution, is possible for a very simple reason:
“Our security sucks, but so does theirs.” That’s what we need to remember. The hackers are no better at securing their communications and their data than we are, and we know we’re bad at it, right?
Tracking down the hackers turns out to be easier than you think. Baker recounts how this picture yielded the clues that cracked a case.
Baker’s larger point: we should be aggressive in tracking down hackers and the users of hacked data, and find ways to make it unprofitable for them. We shouldn’t let a maze of legal mumbo-jumbo about cyber privacy discourage us protecting ourselves.