U.S. COULD CRIPPLE SYRIA’S AIR DEFENSES WITH SECRET CYBER WEAPONS

The Washington Times on May 17, 2013, reported that the U.S. military could blind Syria’s air defenses — as it would need to do to establish a ‘no-fly’ zone over rebel held areas — without firing a shot, using new and highly secret cyberattack capabilities, according to USA Today. Excerpts below:

“One of the reasons the Air Force has paid so much attention to cyberwarfare is … for beating enemy air defenses,” James Lewis, an analyst at the Center for Strategic and International Studies told the paper.

The ability to defeat Syria’s Russian-built electronic air defenses would be central to any effort to intervene in the country’s two-year old civil war. U.S. and allied forces would need air supremacy for a no-fly zone, but would need it even more acutely if ground forces were being committed.

Radar are, in some ways, like wireless transmitters and receivers, and jamming equipment can get false information or even destructive data, like malware, into the network via the radar itself, said Shlomo Narkolayev, an analyst who has worked on cyber issues for the Israeli military’s cyberwarfare unit.

“It sounds like science fiction. It’s not,” Narkolayev told the paper. “It’s not hard to do this,” he said.

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