Friday, April 8, 2011

Israel the first cyber privateer haven?

In my November 20, 2010 post I suggested everyone may be underestimating the Mossad. I take that back. Based on Wednesday's Register article, everyone may be underestimating Israel. The headline reads:
Israel mulls creation of elite counter-cyberterrorist unit
The word "counter" in "counter-cyberterrorist" implies something that bites back. To Major General Isaac Ben-Israel, who is slotted to head up the unit, let me suggest several reasons why Israel should consider monetizing their security by splitting the loot with licensed and bonded cyber privateers:

  1. Since it's pretty difficult to differentiate between hacking, cyber crime and outright espionage, why not lump it all together and turn loose the hounds of hell?
  2. A government-issued get-out-of-jail-free card means air cover from a no-nonsense government with a world-wide reputation for getting results in spite of political correctness trends.
  3. Russia and China, the world's two biggest state sponsors of cyber crime and cyber espionage, aren't your friends anyway. So it's not like you're going to lose friends.
  4. Looting the financial assets of criminal organizations and rogue governments could substantially fund your complete cyber defense budget, even if you split the proceeds fifty-fifty with the cyber privateers.
  5. Adhering to my proposed Cyber Privateer Code could mitigate the risks of negative public opinion, since you could make parley videos a matter of public record.
  6. Issuing Israeli Letters of Marque and Reprisal could create a massive influx of smart and rich immigrants to your country (for a change).
  7. There mere existence of Israeli-sponsored cyber privateering could deter 90% of the hacking attacks your country faces. Crime is quite Darwinian, and the potential threat of a hacking miscalculation to bring total financial ruin could make "the bad guys" think twice. Should work better than lamb's blood on the door to deter the destroying angel from taking Egypt's firstborn.
  8. Finally, setting up a world-wide cyber privateer bonding authority could be a major new financial instrument. In fact, it could be the major new financial entity of this brave new millennium. 
Major General Ben-Israel, consider the possibilities. What better way to counter-attack your enemies than to loot their world-wide financial assets? And the best part is that you wouldn't have to train your cyber army. Or even fund them (they'd pay you from their successful exploits). You just have to make sure they play by the rules.

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Implementation suggestions for THE MORGAN DOCTRINE are most welcome. What are the "Got'chas!"? What questions would some future Cyber Privateering Czar have to answer about this in a Senate confirmation hearing?