Ret. U.S. Army Col. Derek Harvey tells Newsmax that there is a good chance that a "Cyber 9/11" attack will happen in the next few years, especially from Russia.
"We should be very concerned about a cyber-9/11 attack, whether it's from a terrorist organization like the Islamic State or from a state-sponsored element, whether through an association or directly from a state like Iran or Russia or some other location," Harvey, former adviser to Gen. David Petraeus, told J.D. Hayworth and Miranda Khan on "America's Forum" on Newsmax TV
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"We have tremendous vulnerabilities. We still have gaps in our ability to coordinate and synchronize preventive measures, [and] the intelligence communication between entities is still very weak," he said.
Harvey said that a major cyberattack in the next few years is "a very good possibility," adding that "the capabilities and intent are out there. It's about timing and the determination of our foes."
In a recent opinion piece for The Wall Street Journal, cyberwarfare and intelligence experts Mitchell Silber and Daniel Garrie wrote that groups such as the Islamic State (ISIS) as well as countries like Russia have demonstrated their ability to engage in cyberwarfare in recent years.
Harvey told Newsmax that he's "more concerned about a state operation, because they have more capability. I don't anticipate it coming from Iran in the near future because they're getting what they want."
However, he said that "Russia has been particularly malign in doing things against its neighbors like Estonia, where they basically shut down their Internet system and their infrastructure in certain key areas for almost two weeks."
Harvey added that "we need to be really concerned because of the aggressive nature of that regime."
Former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Pete Hoekstra of Michigan joined Harvey on "America's Forum" and said that "there continues to be significant vulnerabilities.
"The private sector is not stepping up the way it needs to keep America safe; government's lagging behind," Hoekstra said.
"This is a threat we've known about for an extended period of time," he added. "We just haven't come together and outlined a successful strategy to battle it."
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