James Adams (UK journalist)

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James Adams is a former journalist with the Sunday Times, well known for acting as a conduit for official and intelligence leaks. He is the Formerly the CEO of UPI and is CEO and founder of both IDefense and the Ashland Institute for Strategic Studies[1][2]. He is also an adviser to the US National Security Agency[3].

He was involved in the controversy over the Sunday Times's reporting of the killings in Gibraltar in March 1988, in which three unarmed Irish Republican Army (IRA) members were shot dead by undercover members of the Special Air Service (SAS).

The following is Adams's biography on the Powell's Books website:

James Adams is the Chief Executive Officer of United Press International. Formerly the Washington Bureau Chief, managing editor, and defense correspondent for the London Sunday Times, he has reported on American politics and international relations, with special interest in terrorism and intelligence, and is also the author of twelve previous books, both fiction and nonfiction. He lives in Cabin John, Maryland.[4]

Cyberterrorism

Adams appears regularly in the media warning of the danger of cyberterrorism.

He was quoted in an interview with USA Today commenting on potential cyberterrorist attacks, he said:

Al-Qaeda doesn't see cyberterrorism as achieving significant military goals. They see the world in a rather old-fashioned way, where bombings and shootings have direct impact and scare people[5].

In an interview with PBS Adams described the danger posed by cyberterrorism:

You and I can go into our local computer store and buy what is essentially an immensely powerful weapon: the computer. And you can load that weapon with very powerful bullets, which are hacks downloaded from the web, and you can fire that weapon at pretty much anybody you choose[6].

Cyberterrorism as the Next World War

In an interview with Frontline, Adams described how intelligence agencies see cyberterrorism as the next world war:

. . . For example, when I was in Moscow a couple of years ago, it was very clear to me, from talking to the senior people in the scientific and intelligence communities, that they already feel they're at war. They are convinced that they are engaged in the next world war, that it is happening in cyberspace, and that they're losing. They're very active in the area, but they think that America has a very significant advantage, which is why the Russians have come up with two proposals for arms control agreements in cyberspace[7].
Well, they haven't got much of a reception for that, because America and its allies think that we're winning the war, so why should we have a treaty? But it is a very dynamic environment, where everybody sees that they need to play, and everybody is trying to seize advantage. And all the aggressors currently have the opportunity, because nobody is properly defended[8].

The role of i-Defense in combatting cyberterrorism

Adams describes the role of i-Defense in

Well, from a personal perspective, because I've seen so much of the consequences of war and of chaos, I wish to play a part in not having chaos. My job is not offensive information warfare. Could we have the capability if we chose? Sure. But would I ever launch an offensive attack? Absolutely not. That's not our business. If others choose to do that, fine. All I provide is the intelligence that says, "This is an indication, this is a warning, this is what you need to do." And I can then serve, not just America, but I can serve Japan and Asia from iDefense Japan, and I can serve Europe from iDefense UK. So hopefully, I can serve the globe without fear or favor in an impartial way, with intelligence that enables everybody to defend themselves[9].

Affiliations

Sunday Times | Gibraltar Killings - 6 March 1988 | United Press International | Foreign Affairs | Council on Foreign Relations | iDefense | US National Security Agency[10] (Advisory Board) | Ashland Institute for Strategic Studies

Notes

  1. Jon Swartz, Cyberterror impact, defense under scrutiny, USA Today, 2-August-2004, Accessed 12-December-2009
  2. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009
  3. James Adams, Virtual Defense, Foreign Affairs, May/June 2001, accessed 22 Sept 2009
  4. Author Biography in Review of James Adams, Next World War Computers Are the Weapons, Powell's Books website, accessed 22 Sept 2009
  5. Jon Swartz, Cyberterror impact, defense under scrutiny, USA Today, 2-August-2004, Accessed 12-December-2009
  6. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009
  7. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009
  8. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009
  9. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009
  10. Frontline, Interview with James Adams, Frontline, Accessed 12-December-2009