Bruce Schneier on Cyber War and Cyber Crime

Dublin Core


Schneier is a leading security expert. He does not deny that cyber attacks are effective and damaging, but provides an educated alternative to dominant government and military voices. He questions whether certain cyber attacks (like the Stuxnet worm or DDOS attacks) actually constitute acts of war. 

Bruce Schneier's confidently states that people are "grossly exaggerating the threat of cyberwar." He believes that while cyber threats are clearly real, some people in power are exaggerating the threat (like Mike McConnell and U.S. Senator, Olympia Snowe).

Schneier suggests that part of the problem in understanding current and potential cyber attacks is that there is no official definition of "cyberwar." No one knows when it starts, what it looks like or when it ends. According to Schneier, cyberwar is a rhetorical war (similar to the war on drugs or war on terror). Using the term "cyberwar" enforces the idea that United States citizens are helpless and need the state for protection. 

Cyberwar is a growing concern for the United States Government. Citizens can play a role in how cybersecurity is run (via policy meetings, activism, etc.), so Schneier's viewpoint about cyber issues is important to stay well-rounded and educated about the topic. 

Schneier's speech is used in the Concerned Citizen, Education, Journalism, and Policymaker Directories. Alternative viewpoints about cyberwar are not widely disseminated in the media. Schneier brings salient issues to the forefront of the cyberwar phenomena.



November 10, 2010


Website Item Type Metadata

Local URL



Bruce Schneier , "Bruce Schneier on Cyber War and Cyber Crime," in Cyberwar Resources Guide, Item #100, (accessed November 28, 2021).