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¿Se puede ejercer la disuasión en la guerra cibernética?

CAMBRIDGE – En los años 90 del siglo pasado surgieron los primeros temores a un “Pearl Harbor cibernético”, y desde entonces a las autoridades les ha preocupado el que los hackers puedan hacer explotar oleoductos, contaminar las fuentes de agua, abrir compuertas y enviar aviones en rumbos de colisión tras apoderarse de los sistemas de tráfico aéreo. En 2012, Leon Panetta, entonces Secretario de Defensa de EE.UU. advirtió que los hackers “podrían cortar la red energética de amplias áreas del país”.

Ninguno de estas hipótesis de caos ha ocurrido, pero ciertamente no se pueden descartar. A un nivel más modesto, los hackers pudieron destruir un alto horno en una fundición de acero alemana el año pasado. Así que la pregunta sobre la seguridad es clara: ¿es posible impedir mediante la disuasión que se realicen acciones así de destructivas?

A veces se dice que la disuasión no es una estrategia eficaz en el ciberespacio, debido a lo difícil que resulta atribuir el origen de un ataque y la gran cantidad de actores estatales y no estatales que pueden estar implicados. A menudo no estamos seguros de quién son los bienes que podemos retener y por cuánto tiempo.

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