Castro Calls for 'Cyber-NATO' as Deterrence Against Computer Attacks

San Antonio Congressman Joaquin Castro says it is time for the U.S. and its allies to consider a ‘Cyber NATO’ to protect against inevitable computer attacks, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

Castro, who is a member of the influential House Intelligence Committee, told the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce that it is inevitable that any future wars will be fought, at least partly, in cyberspace.

Castro says NATO kept the peace in Europe for decades following World War II, and the same idea should be tried for protection against computer warfare.

“NATO is an organization that exists in a mutual agreement among nations, that if one nation is attacked physically, there will be a mutual response among all members,” he said.  “But nothing like that exists for cyber intrusions.”

Castro says the Russian postings on Facebook, which his committee released last week, demonstrate how easy it is in the days of social media, for a country to use computer technology against another.

He pointed out that Russian hackers managed to set up counter demonstrations, for and against the dismantling of Confederate monuments, on opposite sides of the street in Houston by posting inflammatory messages on Facebook, and both of the demonstrations received many attendees.

Castro also pointed out that new evidence has indicated that the fury over 2015’s Operation Jade Helm, which was a routine military planning exercise, was fanned by Russian hackers into a sinister attempt to suppress civil liberties, prompting even Gov. Greg Abbott to weigh in at the time.  Castro says that was an initial attempt by the Russians to see how far they could push America’s buttons, and it worked.

“Even if it was created, even if was fake to start, once it starts going,” Castro said of’fake news,’ “it’s tough to weed it out.”

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