Sunday, January 11, 2015

Countdown to Zero Day by Kim Zetter

Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the World's First Digital WeaponCountdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the World's First Digital Weapon by Kim Zetter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

really fascinating book. i read parts of this book when ran articles on it. i finally bought the book after reading "the intercept" article (

in summary - nation states are using viruses/worms to infect programmable logic controllers (PLCs), which are pieces of smart hardware that open and shut valves along with a plethora of other activities in power plants and other types of manufacturing centers.

the book said this was the first time this has happened, but then it went on to give dozens of examples of how PLC hacks have occurred before.

in summary; when president bush didn't want to invade or start a war with iran, they found other options for taking out the nuclear activities in iran. they used reconnaissance hacking tools to gather information, including hacking legitimate digital certificates, and then created a missile type hacking tool and then launched it on iran. the US and Israel modified the hacking tools several times. The mission was so long, that Obama inherited it and even expanded and accelerated it.

but, unwittingly, symantec, adblokada and others discovered the hacking tools and were able to reverse engineer the hacking missile. when they published their findings, the US and Israel stopped the program (or at least the parts where they were still "gathering information"). Also, an inside source said that the revelations of symantec and others did not stop their missions; that the government has more advanced tools now.

bottom line - our digital world will becoming increasingly less stable as the Internet and Cyber Space have become battle grounds. this could eventually impact the general public in numerous ways, from loss of banking information to death (think nuclear plants or chemical plants or oil refineries or power infrastructure being sabotage).

these problems keep a lot of people up at night. and if you have a creative imagination, reading this book could keep you up at night too.

happy sleeping!

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