JERUSALEM, Israel — Iranian-backed Palestinian terror group Hamas, the de facto rulers of the impoverished Gaza Strip, is stepping up its cyber actions towards Israel. And it is time for Western nations, together with the U.S., to take such threats extra significantly, a report revealed lately by Washington-based suppose tank the Atlantic Council has discovered.
In response to the report authored by non-resident fellow Simon Handler, whereas the U.S. overwhelmingly focuses its cybersecurity issues on the “huge 4” nation-state adversaries — China, Russia, Iran and North Korea — non-state actors have gotten more and more organized and environment friendly in cyber warfare.
Hamas, a delegated terror group in accordance with the U.S., is a transparent check case for what such teams are able to and, writes Handler, “is an rising and succesful cyber actor.”
Handler highlights how Hamas, which has fought quite a few wars with Israel and carried out numerous terror assaults towards its civilians, has not essentially shifted its general targets – to terminate what it views because the illegitimate state of Israel and set up an Islamic, Palestinian state as a replacement – however quite has now harnessed superior high-tech terror choices in its combat.
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“In different phrases, offensive cyber operations are a brand new approach for Hamas to do outdated issues higher,” notes the report, urging “the coverage neighborhood to suppose in another way about the way it approaches related non-state teams that will leverage the cyber area sooner or later.”
“I believe that the U.S. and all people else needs to be involved as a result of terrorists are utilizing the web,” Brigadier Common (Res.) Yossi Kupperwasser, a senior researcher on the Israel Protection and Safety Discussion board, commented in an interview with Fox Information Digital. “What Hamas does towards Israel may be performed by different terror teams and towards different targets.”
The report notes that “a sturdy on-line presence is important for contemporary terrorist organizations. They rely on the web to recruit members, fund operations, indoctrinate goal audiences and garner consideration on a world scale — all key features for sustaining organizational relevance and for surviving.”
Kupperwasser, a former head of the Israeli military’s Army Intelligence Evaluation Division, stated the cyberwar realm afforded terror teams the chance to trigger broad injury at minimal threat. And, he stated, Hamas had already carried out some “fairly spectacular” operations within the cyber realm.
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“They’ll trigger actual injury and, finally, out of many makes an attempt, certainly one of them may be profitable,” he stated. “[Israel] has excellent countermeasures, it’s an space the place we excel. However in cyber, if you find yourself on the receiving finish, even if you happen to handle to thwart many makes an attempt towards you, it’s not foolproof.”
Israel has lengthy claimed Hamas’ cyber capabilities pose an more and more severe menace. Throughout an intense spherical of combating with Hamas in Might 2021, Israel drew world condemnation for destroying a tower block in Gaza that housed the workplaces of The Related Press and different media. The Israeli army later stated the 11-story al-Jalaa constructing additionally housed the Islamist terror group’s digital warfare web site.
The Atlantic Council additionally provides the instance of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia when Israeli troopers watched the matches on an app on their smartphones at an Israel Protection Forces (IDF) base. The Android app, Golden Cup, which was downloaded free from the Google Play retailer, was, the truth is, malware that discreetly monitored the goal’s gadget and stole delicate info.
Previous to that, in 2017, Hamas used a collection of faux Fb accounts to join with younger recruits in an try to realize entry to delicate military info. Dozens of troopers, largely from fight models, have been tricked into chatting with individuals they believed have been younger, engaging ladies in Israel and overseas, whereas Hamas accessed important information on their telephones.
“Hamas’ cyber capabilities have turn into more and more refined and have expanded to focus on not solely Israel, however different international locations it sees as hostile,” Joe Truzman, analysis analyst on the Basis for Protection of Democracies (FDD), informed Fox Information Digital. “Over the past decade or so, Hamas and different Palestinian militant organizations acknowledged the cyber enviornment as an essential area to weaponize and have slowly developed refined strategies to counter Israel.”
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Final month, on its Telegram channel, Hamas revealed a tribute to the individual it stated had established the group’s cyber unit eight years in the past. Within the announcement, the group stated it was “retaining tempo with scientific and technological improvement and inventing new strategies in confronting the Zionist enemy (Israel)” all through its “jihadist historical past,” Israeli information channel i24 reported.
Whereas the Atlantic Council report calls Hamas “a inexperienced hat hacker,” a group comparatively new to the hacking world missing sophistication, it determines that it’s “absolutely dedicated to creating an impression and eager to be taught alongside the way in which.”
“Hamas has demonstrated regular enchancment in its cyber capabilities and operations over time, particularly in its espionage operations towards inner and exterior targets,” the report stated . “On the identical time, the group’s improvisation, deployment of comparatively unsophisticated instruments and efforts to affect audiences are all hallmarks of terrorist methods.”
“Hamas’ lately revealed cyber unit does pose a menace towards Israel,” stated Truzman. “There have been indicators in 2019 that the Israel Protection Forces acknowledged it as a menace when it bombed a web site within the Gaza Strip utilized by Hamas for cyber operations.
“Some of the regarding components of Hamas’ capabilities is its potential to recruit spies in Israel for cyber operations,” he added, highlighting a latest incident by which three Israelis have been caught transferring volumes of delicate information to Hamas in Turkey.
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Netanyahu warns of potential ‘eruption of AI-driven wars’ that could lead to ‘unimaginable’ consequences
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned the world is on the cusp of an artificial intelligence revolution that could launch nations into prosperous times or lead to all-out destruction fueled by devastating high-tech wars.
“The AI revolution is progressing at lightning speed,” Netanyahu said during his U.N. General Assembly speech last week. “It took centuries for humanity to adapt to the agricultural revolution. It took decades to adapt to the industrial revolution. We may have but a few years to adapt to the AI revolution.”
Talk of artificial intelligence at the U.N. was hardly common just a few years ago. But after the release of ChatGPT’s wildly popular chatbot that can mimic human conversation and other AI-powered platforms, AI has become a hot topic among world leaders.
Netanyahu’s speech focused on building a peaceful “new Middle East,” and cited relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia as evidence of this intention. He devoted the latter half of his speech to the future of AI and the “perils” the technology poses.
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“The perils are great, and they are before us: The disruption of democracy, the manipulation of minds, the decimation of jobs, the proliferation of crime and the hacking of all the systems that facilitate modern life,” he said.
“Yet, even more disturbing is the potential eruption of AI-driven wars that could achieve an unimaginable scale,” Netanyahu said. “Behind this perhaps looms an even greater threat, once the stuff of science fiction — that self-taught machines could eventually control humans instead of the other way around.”
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Netanyahu’s remarks at the U.N. echo concerns from other world leaders and experts who have warned AI could be used by bad actors or global adversaries during war, which could lead to more death. Earlier this year, Fox News Digital asked ChatGPT to provide examples of “scary AI,” and even the chatbot cited AI-powered weapons used in war.
“An example of ‘scary AI’ is an advanced autonomous weapon system that can independently identify and attack targets without human intervention,” the chatbot responded. “These systems, often referred to as ‘killer robots’ or ‘lethal autonomous weapons,’ raise ethical concerns and the potential for misuse or unintended consequences.”
Researchers at the tech nonprofit Center for AI Safety published a study earlier this year detailing four ways AI could spiral into worldwide catastrophes, including an AI race between nations that could translate to “more destructive wars, the possibility of accidental usage or loss of control and the prospect of malicious actors co-opting these technologies for their own purpose.”
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“Although walking, shooting robots have yet to replace soldiers on the battlefield, technologies are converging in ways that may make this possible in the near future,” the researchers explained.
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Netanyahu called on other nations to address such concerns about a future where “self-taught machines could eventually control humans” and to ensure “that the promise of an AI utopia does not turn into an AI dystopia.”
On the flip side, the Israeli prime minister called on people to “imagine” various scenarios of a more prosperous and efficiently run world by using AI in day-to-day tasks.
“Imagine robots helping to care for the elderly,” Netanyahu said, joking that his speech sounded like “a John Lennon song.” “Imagine the end of traffic jams with self-driving vehicles on the ground, below the ground and in the air. Imagine personalized education that cultivates each person’s full potential throughout their lifetime.”
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Following his visit to the U.S., where he delivered his U.N. speech and also met with tech leader Elon Musk and President Biden, Netanyahu said he plans to make Israel the “No. 3 country in the world” for AI.
“For several months now, I have been formulating a national plan,” Netanyahu said Wednesday, according to The Jerusalem Post. .”Soon I will appoint a project manager on the subject, and I will also submit the national plan to the government and the public.
“Artificial intelligence is an area that is much stronger than cyber, immeasurably stronger than cyber, and we have set the goal of turning the State of Israel into the No. 3 country in the world in this field, a very ambitious goal,” he added.
Russian power substation hit in latest Ukrainian drone wave attack
Moscow’s Ministry of Defence reports downing more than a dozen Ukrainian drones in latest attacks on Russian territory.
A combat drone dropped explosives on an electricity substation in a Russian village near the border with Ukraine, while Russia’s Ministry of Defence reported shooting down more than a dozen Ukrainian drones over the Russian regions of Belgorod, Kursk and Kaluga.
In the Russian village of Belaya, located less than 25km (16 miles) from the border, “a Ukrainian drone dropped two explosive devices on a substation”, Kursk regional governor Roman Starovoyt said on the Telegram messaging app early on Friday.
“One of the transformers caught fire. Five settlements and a hospital were cut off from power supply. Fire crews rushed to the scene,” he said.
“Power will be restored as soon as it is safe to do so.”
Russian authorities said earlier that two Ukrainian drones were destroyed over the neighbouring Belgorod region.
The Defence Ministry in Moscow said the first drone was “thwarted” at about 5pm local time (14:00 GMT) on Thursday. A second drone was brought down about four hours later.
Russia’s state-run TASS news agency later reported, citing Russia’s Defence Ministry, that 10 Ukrainian drones were brought down over the Kursk region overnight and one over the Kaluga region.
Ukraine has intensified its attacks on Russian territory in recent weeks, with regions of the country now regularly subject to waves of Ukrainian drone attacks that have sporadically damaged buildings, including in Moscow.
While Russian officials have downplayed their significance, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy reiterated this week that attacks on targets in Russia would increase.
“We clearly see the areas where pressure on Russia needs to be increased so that terrorist capabilities do not grow,” he said in his nightly address on Tuesday.
“Sanctions are not enough. There will be more. There will be more of our own – Ukrainian actions against the terrorist state. As long as Russia’s aggression continues, Russia’s losses must be tangible,” he said.
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