Responding to the massive global cyberattack that used stolen NSA spying tools and affected some 200,000 Windows servers in more than 200 organizations, including large medical networks, a senior Israeli Defense Force (IDF) official suggested that hacking is more dangerous than missile attacks.
Although the IDF military network was not thought to have been affected, a widespread cyberattack using an NSA cyber tool exploiting an operating system flaw in Windows servers reignited fears of global network shutdowns and bolstered calls for added cyber security, implying that virtual weapons were more dangerous than conventional weapons.
The senior IDF official suggested that “paralyzing Israel’s infrastructure using cyber attacks, for example, is in effect more severe than […] using missiles to attack [a] power plant,” as quoted by the Jerusalem Post.
A missile or bomb attack would “cause a few hours of power outages, which can be stopped,” he said.
Civilian networks are known to be much more vulnerable to cybercrime than military networks. IDF internal network protections are “much stronger than any civilian network,” the official asserted, adding, “There is no civilian network as well protected as the army’s network.”
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday that the country’s infrastructure was not affected by the attack.
Following the major cyberattack, much of Israel’s critical military server network was posted on Sunday as being “under maintenance” until at least 5:00 pm, local time, according to the Jerusalem Post.
The global cyberattack using the stolen NSA hacking tool affected corporate, hospital and government networks in many countries, including the United States and Russia.