[LINK] Cyber attack on Australia More Likely Due to New USA Agreement

Tom Worthington tom.worthington at tomw.net.au
Mon Sep 19 08:27:31 AEST 2011

Media reports indicate that Australia and the United States have agreed 
that cyber attack comes under the terms of the ANZUS Treaty: 

While the treaty was was written during the cold war to address 
conventional warfare, it has only been invoked once, in response to the 
11 September 2001 terrorist attacks on the USA: 

Under US cyberdeterance doctrine, cyber attacks may be responded to with 
military force, including bombing the country launching the attack. The 
probability of such action in the next ten years is very high.

Given the likelihood of a military response by the USA, nations will be 
reluctant to mount large scale cyber attacks. However, they may be 
willing to attack Australia, to send a message to the USA. As the source 
of such attack may not be clear, US public opinion may prevent the US 
military responding. As a result Australia will be at increased risk of 
cyber attack and so needs the capability to respond to such attacks on 
its own.

The Australian Defence Force needs the capability to respond to cyber 
attack. Apart from cyberdefence in depth, with military, government, 
industry and home detection and prevention of on-line attacks: 
Australia will also need to be able to respond militarily.

One approach would be to equip half of the F/A-18F Super Hornet aircraft 
Australia has, for electronic warfare. Twelve of these aircraft have 
been ordered with the wiring needed to turn them into Boeing EA-18G 
Growler electronic warfare aircraft: 

However, the electronic equipment for this has not been ordered yet. At 
the same time another 18 of the standard Super Hornets could be ordered, 
to make up for delays with the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II.

The EA-18Gs can be used for limited military strikes in response to 
cyber attack. The aircraft can disable or destroy electronic equipment 
using their on-board transmitters and "e-bombs" can short circuit the 
power grid of a city.

Tom Worthington FACS CP HLM, TomW Communications Pty Ltd. t: 0419496150
PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617, Australia  http://www.tomw.net.au
Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards 

Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Research School of Computer Science,
Australian National University http://cs.anu.edu.au/courses/COMP7310/

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