In cyberwar, who’s in charge? The president for sure, but after that, it’s pretty murky

When the first salvos of cyberwar are fired against the United States, the responsibility to defend the country falls to the president who, aided by advisers from the broad spectrum of government agencies and also the private sector, must feel his way along an uncertain path to decide the appropriate response.Because possible return fire could come from traditional military, intelligence, diplomatic or economic agencies — and perhaps even from private business — the United States needs a set of policies and procedures for cyberwarfare that are still in the making, experts say. see:Is the U.S. the nation most vulnerable to cyberattack?
Although the United States likely has the best cyberwar capabilities in the world, “that offensive prowess cannot make up for the weaknesses in our defensive position,” one-time presidential advisor Richard Clarke argues in his forthcoming book Cyber War.Clarke — who served as special advisor to the president for cybersecurity in 2001 and now teaches at Harvard’s Kennedy School for Government and works at Good Harbor Consulting — fears that any outbreak of cyber warfare would spill over into more violent conflict. Spat Sets Stage for Cyberwar
Few events have crystallized U.S. fears over a cyber catastrophe, or brought on calls for a strategic response, more than the recent attacks against Google and more than 30 other tech firms.The company’s disclosure in January that it was attacked by China-based hackers — and its subsequent decision to scale back operations there — have stoked long-standing fears over the ability of cyber adversaries to penetrate commercial and government networks in the U.S.

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