Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Iconoclastic Doctrine

I gave a talk at a private intelligence and law enforcement function a few months ago and I wanted to write up part of it for the blog and it went as follows:

Hacking, and hence cyber war, is in many ways the discipline of controlled iconoclasty. There's really two philosophies for mature hackers - people who want to be far ahead of the world, who prove how smart they are by finding bugs and using them in unexpected ways. Essentially characters who put all their stats into vulnerability development. Then there's operators, who can take literally any security weakness no matter how small, and walk that all the way to domain admin. The generational split here, for 90's hackers, used to be cross site scripting, which was viewed largely like a vegan burger at a Texas Bar-B-Q.

There are other generational splits that never happened for hackers, but which I see affect cyber policy. When you read about hackers in the news, you often hear not that they are 400 pound bedridden Russophiles, but that they are transgendered:

If you're not part of the hacker community, like, say if you do government policy for a living, it's easy to miss how much higher the percentage of transgender people are at all levels of the information security world than in the outside world. Hacking requires a mental courage to go your own direction and the clarity to examine societies' norms and discard the ones that don't work for you. If you're looking for cyber talent, you're better off with an ad on Fictionmania than on the Super Bowl broadcast.

Even in religious countries, the majority of their offensive cyber force is Atheistic. And support for the transgender community in the fifth Domain is a generation beyond what it is in the other four.

In summary, assuming that your goal is to "ensure US/Allied freedom of action in cyberspace and deny the same to our adversaries" then the transgender ban is like an NBA team banning tall people because they wear larger clothes. It's strategically stupid, and spills over into the IC and entire military industrial construct. It has national-security level implications, and not good ones.

No comments:

Post a Comment