Cyber attacks 'bigger threat' to US than Al-Qaeda, says top intelligence official
London, Mar 13 : Cyber-attacks and cyber-espionage are greater threats to U.S. national security than Al Qaeda, the nation's top intelligence official has said.
James Clapper, the Director of National Intelligence, has warned that cyber espionage threatened to undercut the American military's technological edge.
According to Sky News, he also cautioned that even 'unsophisticated' attacks could penetrate poorly protected computer networks for power grids and posed an "increasing risk to US critical infrastructure.
Presenting his report to the Senate Intelligence Committee he cited a mounting risk from digital assaults on power grids and other infrastructure.
Unlike previous reports, the assessment ranked cyber attacks first on a list of transnational threats, devoting more words to digital hacking and cyber spying than to Islamist extremists in Afghanistan.
According to the report, Clapper also said that while Al Qaeda was a fading danger, he was concerned about North Korea following recent threats of a nuclear attack on US soil from the leader Kim Jong-Un.
Clapper said he was dismayed by "very belligerent" statements coming from Kim Jong-Un's regime in North Korea.