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A recently appointed member of President Biden’s Intelligence Advisory Board says a new kind of “machine on machine” cyber warfare is coming.
China’s road to the top is through the U.S.
Gilman Louie, appointed in May as a member of President Biden’s Intelligence Advisory Board and chief executive of the newly-formed America’s Frontier Fund*, is warning that machines and algorithms are the future of cyber warfare and China is hellbent on winning that war.
“Everyone is thinking about China,” said Louie in an interview for the “click here” podcast, which was reported by Recorded Future.
“China…feel[s] that they have to go through the U.S. to be No. 1,” he said. “China has decided that the road to the top of the pile needs to be through being tough. ‘We want to be Wolf Warriors.’ The Chinese diplomats are projecting [this kind of] power.”
“[They want to] win in any domain anywhere in the world against any adversary, any day of the week,” Louie said.
“They have this miliary-civil fusion. I think the number is the 15 top leaders of the central party, at least 13 of them have PhDs, doctorate degrees, or are engineers. I think if you took our top 15, it looks like a lot of lawyers. If you’re going to win in a technical race to superiority, I’d rather bet on the engineers than lawyers. No offense to lawyers.”
--Gilman Louie and the dance with Wolf Warriors, Recorded Future, June 14, 2022
And what’s the future of cyber warfare?
“Cyber isn’t going to be like the way it is today. There aren’t going to be a bunch of people staring at screens, calling up and emailing net operators and saying ‘Hey, there’s some threat potential over here. I learned this on the dark web,’” Louie said.
“[The future is] real time speed, algorithm warfare. It’s gonna be algorithms trying to outsmart the other algorithms. It’s gonna be machine-on-machine, algorithm-on-algorithm. Those are the systems of the future, and that requires total integration,” he said.
Nick Curcuru, Head of Solutions Marketing at Venafi, says cybersecurity is going the way of fraud detection in card transactions.
“That is the algorithmic reference he mentions. Machine learning, AI are very dependent on machine to machine communication. Over 90% of ML is strictly machine to machine communication. Compromise the data being fed into the machines and you change the AI decision. So, yes, cyber now has to be done in real time all the time,” he said.
Gregory Crabb, former USPS CISO and founder of TenEight, says machine to machine attacks have already been part of critical infrastructure cyber incidents.
“Cyber is already a machine to machine melee that we are losing to nation state actors and criminal organizations. We have seen where machine to machine attacks have factored into our most costly critical infrastructure cyber incidents,” Crabb said.
Ukraine outmanoeuvring Russia
Louie also had some thoughts on Ukraine, claiming that it's outmanoeuvring the Russians.
“You look at the Ukrainians, what they’ve done so far, at least in the information space, is outmaneuver the Russians. Why? Because they’re better integrated than the Russians. The Russians have not integrated their electronic warfare capability. Their cyber capability – while very capable – is siloed. The Ukrainians are fighting for their lives, so they have to integrate. That’s the lesson that we have to take away from all of this,” he said.
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*America’s Frontier Fund is backed by Eric Schmidt, the former chief executive of Google, and Peter Thiel, a co-founder of PayPal.
Gliman Louie, a partner at venture capital firm Alsop Louie, brought Tetris and Pokémon Go to America and was the founder of In-Q-Tel, the Central Intelligence Agency’s venture capital arm in Silicon Valley.