Is cyberterrorism a real threat?
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Is cyberterrorism a real threat? book
YES: It’s already happening, and there’s more to come
This part of the chapter argues that, depending upon whose definition one uses, cyberterrorist attacks have already occurred, and are occurring in the activities of groups like ISIS, for example. Moreover, the author argues that technological advancements, terrorist intentions and the vulnerabilities of current computer-based systems means that cyberterrorism is a real threat in the coming years.
NO: A narrated catastrophe, not a real threat
Myriam Dunn Cavelty
This section of the chapter argues that cyberterrorism is a ‘narrated catastrophe’, a type of disaster that does not really exist beyond popular stories and narratives. The author suggests that terrorist groups thus far have not managed to orchestrate cyber-attacks with lethal consequences or significant economic damage, while the likelihood of such events happening in the future is, in fact, impossible to estimate. Moreover, it can be argued that terrorists lack both the capabilities and the motivations to use cyber-attacks, not least because of their limited ‘media-effect’ even if they were successful.