The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has raised its network threat
conditions from Information Condition 5 (Infocon 5, which is for "normal"
conditions) to Infocon 4. This indicates increased threat. But there's more
going on than that. There have been several attacks on Department of Defense
networks in the past six months (most recently at the National Defense
University, and the Navy War College). The Department of Defense has also
banned the use of email with HTML code in it. All incoming email will have the
HTML code (which allows for fancy web type features, as well as some kinds of
viruses and hacker attacks) stripped out before the recipient gets it. The
Department of Defense will not say exactly why the Infocon level was increased,
but there are many indications that the Department of Defense networks (all
12,000 of them) are under heavier-than-usual attack. Something bad is going on,
and on one is saying exactly what, perhaps because no one on the receiving end
is exactly sure.