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Cyber attacks leapfrog Al-Qaida as threat to national security

by AirTalk®

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(L-R) FBI Director Robert Mueller, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, CIA Director John Brennan, Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn, and Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research Philip Goldberg testify during a hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee on March 12, 2013 in Washington, DC. The committee held a hearing on "Current and Projected National Security Threats to the United States." Alex Wong/Getty Images

We've poured billions of dollars in the war against terror. But according to James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, the country now has a newer, bigger enemy: cyber attacks.

Clapper, appearing before a Senate Intelligence Committee hearing yesterday, said he only saw a "remote chance" of such an attack taking place. But if and when it happens, the impact would be great. It could mean "long-term, wide-scale disruption of services, such as a regional power outage," according to Clapper. This is the first time the spy agency has upgraded cyber attacks as a top security concern.

Are cyber-attacks a bigger threat than Al-Qaida? What is the U.S. doing to protect important infrastructure? What can we do to protect ourselves?

Dave McIntyre, Director of Homeland Security program at the National Graduate School

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