Noah Shachtman is currently the executive editor at The Daily Beast. Previously, he was executive editor of news at Foreign Policy magazine and editor of Wired magazine's national security blog, Danger Room. He has reported from Afghanistan, Israel, Iraq, Qatar, Kuwait, the Pentagon, Los Alamos and military bases around the country. He writes about technology and national security in numerous publications.
For years we’ve been hearing this real Cassandra talk, from guys like Leon Panetta, about how the next Pearl Harbor could be online. It always seemed a little bit out of whack with what we saw in the real world. …This discovery [of the link between Stuxnet and Flame computer worms] gives a much fuller picture of what this much larger campaign of espionage and sabotage entailed. We knew about Stuxnet and we knew about Duqu [another cyber weapon]... And now we’ve got this third, major effort to do all kinds of espionage, and evidence strongly suggests that they’re all linked.
We now know why they [top administration officials] were making those predictions [of a cyber attack]. They were talking about themselves—not what some outside opponent could do to us, but what we were doing to others...The U.S. has basically endorsed the use of these things publicly, and that does change the game.