Can private enterprise step into the digital crossfire when agents of a state conduct cyberattacks? Per Google, the answer is yes. Google have announced they will warn users if they see signs of a state-sponsored attempt to gain unauthorized access to a user’s accounts. How does Google know if an attack was sponsored by a state? Their response:
We can’t go into the details without giving away information that would be helpful to these bad actors, but our detailed analysis—as well as victim reports—strongly suggest the involvement of states or groups that are state-sponsored.
Google’s stance raises questions for other commercial entities, and how they view their ‘neutrality’ when it comes to protecting customers or handling cyberattacks. One problem with new technology is that it creates a need for new ethical precedents, and Google are trying to play their part in establishing those precedents. Telcos should take note.