I’m not a big fan of the phrase “cyber terrorism”.
Like “cyberwarfare” it’s a term that tends to be bandied around a lot, and used in ways which are likely to belittle the grief, trauma and loss experienced by the true victims of real-life terrorism and war.
It’s the kind of term you expect to hear politicians use in an attempt to scare the public into believing that their internet-enabled fridge will blow up unless intelligence agencies are given the power to snoop upon private communications.
When someone smashed my car window years ago and pinched my radio, I didn’t report it to the authorities as possible terrorist activity. I just rang up the local cop shop who (to be honest) didn’t do anything.
Which was surprising – because isn’t it possible that a terrorist wanted my car radio? I guess that’s possible… just highly highly unlikely.
Hacked adultery site Ashley Madison certainly feels a bit free-and-easy when it comes to the right way to describe whoever breached its systems and stole company records, an archive of emails and customer records:
“Any and all parties responsible for this act of cyber–terrorism will be held responsible.”
Cyber terrorism? *Really* Ashley Madison?
Nope you just suffered a burglary. And the burglars clearly don’t like your company, and want to do your business harm.
I’m sorry that your company got hacked. No business deserves to get hacked. It may not be the case that everyone approves of what your company does, but that shouldn’t give anyone a green light to hack you.
And I’m even more sorry for people who registered on your site, and have had their personal information fall into the hands of hackers. It’s deeply unfortunate that you only gave your users a free way to delete their accounts after the horse had already bolted.
Ashley Madison, you got burgled. Badly.
But that doesn’t mean the burglars are terrorists.Further reading:
- Ashley Madison's leaked database available for download - read this first
- Ashley Madison blackmailers now sending threats via US postal system
- Here's what an Ashley Madison blackmail letter looks like
- Now it's Ashley Madison wives who are receiving blackmail letters
- 'Bring me the head of the AC/DC-loving Ashley Madison hacker'
- Suicide and Ashley Madison
- Ashley Madison: Betting site offers odds on who will be exposed
- 'Yes. I was a member of the Ashley Madison website. But I wasn’t there to cheat on anyone'
- Ashley Madison hack could expose 37 million 'cheating dirtbags'
- No Ashley Madison, you weren't burgled by terrorists
- Ashley Madison users warned of password risk
- Cracked Ashley Madison passwords consistent with years of poor security
- Post-hack, Ashley Madison offers members full and free account deletion
- Don't judge Ashley Madison users too quickly, their accounts may be fake
- Just who is joining the Ashley Madison website?
- Fembots land Ashley Madison in hot water with the FTC
- Ashley Madison's marketing department clearly didn't get the memo
- Ashley Madison: Further thoughts on its aftermath
- Ashley Madison hack claims another victim: Its CEO
- Ashley Madison slammed with $1.6 million fine for devastating data breach