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Accession Number ADA566545
Title China: Paper Tiger in Cyberspace.
Publication Date May 2012
Media Count 46p
Personal Author A. A. Oliva
Abstract For the last decade, the People's Liberation Army (PLA) has been building its cyber capabilities and expanding the importance of cyber technology in military operations. Observers interpret recent cyber incidents as evidence that the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the PLA possess cyber capabilities that pose a threat to the United States and its allies. The question is, are the incidents really manifestations of a PLA threat. To answer that question, it was necessary to define cyber attack and cyber war and then determine whether the cyber incidents reported could support the inference that the Chinese have the capability to conduct cyber attacks on other nations. Next, it was necessary to interpret Chinese efforts to produce military cyber capabilities and determine whether China possesses the intent to attack the United States. Finally, an explanation of hacker incidents assisted in gaining an understanding of the Chinese cyber threat. To constitute a threat, an adversary must possess both the capability to attack and the motive. The evidence available shows that the Chinese have made significant advances in cyber technology, but their intent to use it against the United States is unclear. China's lack of transparency has caused other nations to speculate and worry about China's intent. Defense contractors and politicians have interpreted hacking incidents linked to Chinese citizens to be a manifestation of PRC military activity, but the evidence is insubstantial. Despite the PLA's interest in and preparations for cyber operations, and the importance of networks to military operations, open source evidence does not justify the conclusion that the PRC is a threat per se. Much of what has been classified as a cyber attack is not hostile at all and is actually clandestine spying and a form of intelligence gathering inside computer networks. Hackers, China's internal security threat, are likely their first and foremost priority.
Keywords Attack
Computer access control
Computer network attack
Computer network defense
Computer network exploitation
Computer network operations
Computer network security
Cyber attack
Department of defense
Hacking incidents
Hacking(Computer security)
Information operations
Information warfare
Internal security threats
Military capabilities
Military cyber activities
Military forces(Foreign)
People's liberation army
People's republic of china
Threat evaluation
Uscybercom(United states cyber command)

Source Agency Non Paid ADAS
NTIS Subject Category 62D - Information Processing Standards
74 - Military Sciences
74G - Military Operations, Strategy, & Tactics
Corporate Author Army Command and General Staff Coll., Fort Leavenworth, KS. School of Advanced Military Studies.
Document Type Technical report
Title Note Monograph.
NTIS Issue Number 1307
Contract Number N/A

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