The New Cyber Weapon-Superbug! Does it signal more threats for Cloud computing?

Economictimes carried an article today , the much-feared new cyber-weapon, the ‘Superbug’, has attacked over six million personal and almost 1,000 corporate computers .The Stuxnet cyberworm can break into computers and steal private information, especially from industrial firms, sending it back to a server in the , state-run quoted Wang Zhantao, an engineer at the Beijing-based , an anti-virus service producer in China, as saying.

Official media has been carrying reports about the superbug virus for the past few days said it contained sophisticated malicious software, or malware, believed to be a “new cyber-weapon,” which infiltrates mainly factory computers in China threatening the country’s national security.

“This malware is specially designed to sabotage plants and damage industrial systems, instead of stealing personal data. It will seriously threaten pillar industries in China, which has 420 million internet users,”Once Stuxnet successfully penetrates factory computers in China, those industries may collapse, which would damage national security,” he said adding that it posed no harm to personal computers or Internet surfers.

Emergence of these types of specific types of Cyber Weapons designed to target the economic and industrial infrastructure in my opinion signals the emergence of new types of threats. I can only imagine the possibilities of  sophisticated cyber weapons designed to attack Public or Private Clouds in the future.

In one of the RSA Security conferences held early this year as reported by IT World, Chambers,Cisco’s CEO called “Cloud computing as  a Security Nightmare” and  Chambers said that cloud computing was inevitable, but that it would shake up the way that networks are secured. “You’ll have no idea what’s in the corporate datacenter,” he said.

In my Viewpoint, one should not  underestimate the impact of sophisticated cyber attacks if targeted on the Clouds ,especially since they are already running hundreds of companies business apps and are expected to power  thousands and thousands of businesses in the future.

Why ?  Simply because, a major disruption or breakdown of services for a single Cloud and /or SaaS Vendor has the potential  to compromise and cripple thousands of businesses in one single place and time. It becomes easier for the attacker to knock out several thousands of businesses in the shortest possible time.  All perhaps with just “One or two” Cyber missiles! An attacker might have a lot of motivation to target a ‘single place’ (cloud) that would provide an opportunity for a larger destruction.

In the next post , I will share information and thoughts about the state of affairs in security and its context to cloud computing and some of the ways that you can reduce your risks of running your businesses on the cloud.


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