Computer Science


Running head: CYBERWAR


Outstanding title page formatting

Cyber War





Introduction Cyber War

Cyber warfare refers to a computer or network-based conflict that disrupts the activities of a state or organization by deliberate attacking critical infrastructures. Cyber attacks can also be described as an attack by hostile groups such as terrorist or hacker groups aimed, at furthering the goals of a given nation. To have a better understanding, cyber warfare can take different forms such as; viruses that can take down water supplies, military systems, transportation systems, hacking and theft of critical data from government and private institutions. This paper will focus on assessing various mechanism applied in different articles to counter cybersecurity and protect critical infrastructure. Further, by analyzing the results and experience in Xia, Becerra-Fernandez, Gudi, & Rocha-Mier (2011), the essay will also show how the findings can be utilized in real life scenario.

1. What do the articles have in common?

According to Clemente (2011), the advancement of interconnection between different infrastructures sectors has boosted by the escalation of cyberspace. The author points out that the security implications are inevitable especially in this era of cyberspace and infrastructure. The main idea in the article involves around the definition of ‘critical’ infrastructure to enable effective prioritization and protection of nodes and connection points. FEMA (2013 ), points out that the United States well being relies upon secure critical infrastructure that forms American society. According to Saadawi, & Jordan , (2011), there is need to establish an international cyber union that will help overcome cybersecurity challenges in securing cyberinfrastructure. This article considers the practical considerations that are associated with EINSTEIN 3 and how this can be used to ensure effective protection of critical infrastructure networks. Having evaluated the main argument of these articles, they all share the aspect of understanding cybersecurity and different ways ensuring infrastructure protection.

2. What are the differences in their assessment of cybersecurity and critical infrastructure protecti on?

The above articles portray some distinction in their evaluation of cyber war and protection of vital infrastructure. The first article by Clemente (2011), tries to examine how cybersecurity challenges can be overcome by understanding various components in society. The article offers more theoretical approaches to counterattack cybersecurity and protection of critical infrastructures. The second article by FEMA (2013 ) is more detailed and comprehensive on the issue of cybersecurity and protection of critical infrastructures in the society. For instance, it offers a plan that will require a federal agency (SSA) to lead a coordinated process for vital infrastructure security within critical infrastructures sectors.

The third article does not only expose the nature the problem of cyber attack but further continues to describe how each of these of problems can be tacked in a manner that is more applicable. In this regard, the article profoundly shows how the government should be responsive in offering intelligence that can be used to prevent cyber attacks. The last article assess the issue in a more practical way compared to FEMA (2013 ) that it just theoretical. In this case, the article is more persuasive in the sense that its emphasis on proactive measures and preparedness. For example, in relation to EINSTEIN 3 devices, the article insists on developing to detail legitimate uses of the devices. In addition, the article is more elaborate on how the device can be integrated into different sectors to ensure cybersecurity and protection of critical cyber infrastructure.

3. How does FEMA’s Critical Infrastructure Protection Plan address key requirements set for by C lemente (2011)?

The two articles are similar in some aspects based on how they address the issue of cybersecurity and protection of critical infrastructures. FEMA’S critical infrastructures protection plan acknowledges acceleration of interconnection between critical sectors. Further, the article also points out that as nations become more dependent on infrastructures distributed around the world, the growing complexity poses a challenge in identifying what infrastructures is critical. On the other hand, according to The Department of Homeland Security Office, there are different securities as well as resilience challenges. In this case, both articles insist on cooperation between key stakeholders in order to prevent, minimize cybersecurity threats and boost security in critical infrastructures.

Research Que stion

The cyber threats and attack of critical infrastructures are rapidly changing with different strains of malware attacking network in government and private sectors. To some extent, organizations are reluctant in cyber crime. Therefore, this raises the question what practical approaches the society needs in order to combat the growing problem created by cyber attacks.


1. Findings and Lessons Learned in Xia, Becerra-Fernandez, Gudi, & Rocha-Mier (2011)

A disaster like Hurricane Katrina and the famous 9/111 terrorist attacks have made emergency management a top priority for policymakers. Each crisis is unique which means it is challenging to determine a crisis before it actually occurs. On the other hand, emergency tasks are inherently complex and constantly changing, requiring responsive sharing of information for effective decision making. Considering the importance of information needed for quick assessment and decision making the article proposes on knowledge and information sharing between different agencies. According to the first finding, EOC tasks are highly sophisticated posing a risk of the intrinsic dilemma of handling the conflicts of task complexity. Moving on, despite the high level of sophistication, tasks were accomplished successfully due to effective knowledge dissemination. The EOC’s information and communication technology tools are responsible for facilitating an environment for knowledge sharing. For example, EOC has jointly interacted SLOSH 11 a computer model that calculates probable storms surge based on such elements as size or direction. It was found that EOC personnel training are thorough in the sense that it must be conducted beyond the required parameters.

Information Fusion in Hennessy, Patterson & Lin (Eds.) (2003)

Following the events of September 11, 2001, various organizations offered their services to the nation in an attempt to come up with scientific as well technological responses to the challenges of terrorist attacks. After the attack, the United States government took the issue of terrorism seriously because it demonstrated the harm it would cause the nation’s people and its infrastructure. Most of the nation’s civil communication, as well as data network infrastructure, are not secure enough against attacks. In most cases, critical infrastructures are localized either geographically or in modes of communications. This means that absence of physical damage is done to them, both the computing and communication ability disrupted in an attack are likely to be recoverable within a short period of time. Terrorists now days can use IT as the weapon to disrupt critical infrastructures such as hospitals, banks or military facilities or energy sources. The intended idea is to shaken public confidence and also disrupts critical economic structures. IT has become the cornerstone of every society, thus targeting of IT could have catastrophic consequences.

Disrupted IT, on the other hand, can give terrorist opportunities to widen the damage. According to the article, the internet is another likely target given the public prominence. Therefore, the internet may appeal as an attractive target. This means that, the ability to combat these threats is a fundamental component of a diligent information security programmed within a nation or an organization. The first approach to dealing with cyber-terrorists consists use of various technologies and products. A good example, in this case, is the use of firewalls or cryptography together with implementing stringent measures to protect the IT assets owned or operated by organizations. The federal government, therefore, has invested heavily in research to counter terrorist attacks. Terrorism is a global disaster thus the idea of sharing information between different government agencies is important. This could help to mitigate an attack or damage limitation.

Application of the above findings in real life scenario

The aforementioned findings can be used to prevent and mitigate disaster or attacks in local area that is prone to floods and Hurricanes. The primary approach to preventing disasters is to facilitate implementation of policies and embrace practice knowledge for informed decision making not to mention coordination action. In this connection, relevant agencies and emergency response in the region should invest in disaster programs. This is because it is essential to have strengthened measures and efforts that improve people’s comprehension of the connections between various aspects related to cybersecurity and disaster. Basically, the idea of disaster awareness program can also be introduced in the state because people should have a clear scope of the underlying issues. This is essential because it will enhance coordination thus effective sharing of knowledge and information.

The findings, as well as lessons depicted in the article, seem to focus on disaster as well as prevention of critical infrastructures. Narrowing down, the findings can be used to strengthen cybersecurity measures in private and government institution. On the other hand, in order to ensure a smooth flow of information between different stakeholders in the society, it is also imperative to create awareness to the public. This is because the key to reducing the loss of life, damages from natural disasters among others is possible through education. For instance, focusing on the internet, people must be made aware of what cyber-attacks they are likely to face in their own societies. The idea is to let them know in advance to avoid any catastrophic disasters. In this case, the community should integrate some of the aspects in schools, hospitals as well as other institutions to heighten security.

To conclude, people and disaster management agencies work in disaster management have responsibilities related to global security. This means that there is need to how governments and disaster response units can streamline knowledge sharing in order to optimize collaboration among different organizations.

Reference s

Xia, W., Becerra-Fernandez, I., Gudi, A., & Rocha, J. (2011). Emergency management task complexity and knowledge-sharing strategies. Cutter IT Journal24(1), 20.

Hennessy, J., Patterson, D. A., & Lin, H. S. (2003). Information technology for counterterrorism: Immediate actions and future possibilities. Committee on the role of information technology in responding to terrorism.

Clemente, D. (2013). Cyber security and global interdependence: what is critical? Chatham House, Royal Institute of International Affairs.

Bellovin, S. M., Bradner, S. O., Diffie, W., & Landau, S. (2011). Can it really work-problems with extending EINSTEIN 3 to critical infrastructure? Harv. Nat’l Sec. J.3, 1.

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