US defenses are insufficient to stop Chinese cyber attacks. The US-China Economic and Security Review Commission estimates that Chinese cyber attacks cost the US hundreds of billions of dollars annually. By way of comparison, this is substantially more than the entire Chinese military budget.
What is needed is a threat that is both capable of forcing China to take notice and that it will believe the United States would execute. Such a threat exists. While China’s regime does not appear willing to be deterred by conventional diplomatic or legal complaints, it has demonstrated considerable concern about threats to its censorship apparatus.
The most effective way to threaten Chinese censorship would be for US and partner nations to develop their own cyber militias. Rather than stealing intellectual property and disabling public institutions, however, Western militias would aim at finding ways to bypass Chinese firewalls to spread internet freedom.
There already are American cyber militias. Pretty much the entire Psychological Operation effort intended for the American domestic target audience is entrusted to them. American cyber militia Computer Network Exploitation is a specialty of Internet Anthropologist Think Tank.
The Jawa Report are outstanding American cyber militia Computer Network Attackers and counterpropagandists, specializing in monitoring and taking down Jihadi websites.
Most of the conservative and libertarian blogosphere would love to be involved in disseminating information that annoys the Chicoms and spreads internet freedom behind the Great Firewall. But who amongst the .gov/.mil Regulars dares to work by, with and through Irregular Information Operators in the current political environment?
Also at GlobalSecurity.org
Countering the Cyber Jihad, 2006/04/28
Geek Battalion, 2006/05/01
Wedges and Mauls, 2007/09/30
Plausibly Deniable Cat Herders, 2007/10/19
People’s Information Support Team, 2008/02/24
Red Chinese Cyber-Militia, 2008/05/29
Public Affairs and Information Operations, 2008/12/31
eResistance in Moldova, 2009/04/07
The amateurization of cyberwarfare, 2009/08/09