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Word Count: 1,199
In the past few decades people all over the world have been all too eager to embrace the technological revolution One in every 4 Australian homes now owns a least one computer But few people have stopped to realize that in accepting these changes so readily we have opened a virtual Pandoras box Our homes are an open book to hackers our credit card numbers available to cyber-thieves and the stock market is a virtual playground for hacktivists on the World Wide Web The human race has fought its fair share of wars over the years but now as we venture into the new millennium we are faced with a whole new battle V a battle in which biological warfare has been replaced with computer viruses spies with Trojan programs that allow the user to see into his enemys base and nuclear weapons with email-bombs But our enemies belong to no particular country or religious group Rather they are faceless and nameless They are the hackers the hacktivists and the cyber-thieves and they fight not for land resources or freedom but rather for information Information warfare IW refers to both the offensive and defensive use of information and computers in an effort to observe alter or destroy the information of another while protecting ones own The recent explosion in the use of information systems both in the public and business sectors is paralleled by a sudden increase in hostile technological activity Consequently the development of defensive systems has also risen in an effort to protect information Few people however have even the slightest idea that this war is being waged - yet it affects every single one of us Some may wonder what interest hackers may have in their personal computer The answer to this question is not simple The majority of Internet hackers are simply driven by fun V a certain amount of voyeurism exists in gaining a window into another
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