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Digital Subscriptions > Newsweek International > 11th November 2016 > THE HACKER’S PEARL HARBOR


The recent internet attack is just a taste of how ugly the hack war will be and how much worse it’s going to get


ONE WEEK before the recent massive hack attack shut off access to Twitter, PayPal, Airbnb and dozens of other major websites, I was at an off -the-record conference with leaders of some of the country’s biggest companies, discussing cyberthreats. Like soldiers in one of the landing crafts approaching the beach on D-Day, the CEOs seemed resigned to their grim fate. A destructive attack was inevitably going to rip through some, if not all, of them. They felt sorry for themselves and one another.

And most weren’t even imagining how bad it’s going to get. IBM CEO Ginni Rometty has said cybercrime is today’s greatest threat to global business, apparently putting it ahead of nuclear war, climate change or an alien invasion.

We’re in an age of world-changing technological wonders—self-driving cars, artificial intelligence, digital currencies, virtual reality, speech recognition that’s more accurate than humans. We’re putting chips and software into everything and connecting it all to a global network, creating a giant hive of people, places and things. These advances can make life easier, safer and more prosperous for most people. But technology doesn’t have morals, and bad people with evil intentions can hijack any invention. Your cool new electronic-connected toilet? Just wait until a hacker turns it against you.

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TRUMP'S MISSING EMAILS Over the course of decades, Donald Trump’s companies have systematically destroyed or hidden thousands of emails, digital records and paper documents demanded in official proceedings, often in defiance of court orders. These tactics, exposed by a Newsweek review of thousands of pages of court lings, judicial orders and a davits from an array of court cases, have enraged judges, prosecutors, opposing lawyers and the many ordinary citizens entangled in litigation with Trump. In each instance, Trump and entities he controlled also erected numerous hurdles that made lawsuits drag on for years, forcing courtroom opponents to spend huge sums of money in legal fees as they struggled sometimes in vain to obtain records.