President Joe Biden warned that if the United States ended up in a 'real shooting war' with a 'major power' it could be the result of a significant cyber attack on the country.
Cybersecurity has risen to the top of the agenda for the Biden administration after a series of high-profile attacks on entities such as network management company SolarWinds, the Colonial Pipeline company, meat processing company JBS and software firm Kaseya hurt the U.S. far beyond just the companies hacked.
Analysts and law enforcement claim that Russian speaking and Russia linked cyber gangs were behind several major attacks recently with REvil gang behind JBS and Kaseya attacks, DarkSide behind the Colonial Pipeline breach and a group of Russian government backed hackers behind the Solarwinds attack.
"I think it's more than likely we're going to end up, if we end up in a war - a real shooting war with a major power - it's going to be as a consequence of a cyber breach of great consequence and it's increasing exponentially, the capabilities," Biden said during a half-hour speech while visiting the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI).
During a June 16 summit in Geneva between Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin, Biden shared a list of critical infrastructure the U.S. considers off-limits to nation-state actors. Since then, senior members of the Biden administration's national security team have been in constant contact with senior members of the Kremlin over cyber attacks on the United States, the White House has said.
Biden also highlighted the threats posed by China, referring to President Xi Jinping as "deadly earnest about becoming the most powerful military force in the world, as well as the largest and most prominent economy in the world by the mid-40s, the 2040s."
(Reporting by Nandita Bose in Washington; editing by Grant McCool; additional input by CyberNews)