Skip to main content
The Social, Political, Economic, and Cultural Dimensions of Cyber Attacks
IEEE Technology and Society
  • Robin Gandhi, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Anup Sharma, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • William Mahoney, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • William Sousan, University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • Qiuming Zhu, University of Nebraska at Omaha
Document Type
Publication Date
Essential systems providing water, electricity, healthcare, finance, food, and transportation are now increasingly software dependent, distributed, and interconnected. The detrimental consequences of this growing dependence become apparent during times of political conflict, social instability, and other traumatic events. The Internet has made information exchange easier and more efficient, but it has also created a new space in which criminals and terrorists can operate almost undetected. No longer is modern human conflict confined to the physical world; it has spread to cyberspace. Cyberspace is a massive socio technical system of systems, with a significant component being the humans involved. Current anomaly detection models focus primarily on analyzing network traffic to prevent malicious activities, but it has been shown that such approaches fail to account for human behaviors behind the anomalies. Evidence is growing that more cyber-attacks are associated with social, political, economic, and cultural (SPEC) conflicts. It is also now known that cyber-attackers' level of socio-technological sophistication, their backgrounds, and their motivations, are essential components to predicting, preventing, and tracing cyber-attacks. Thus, SPEC factors have the potential to be early predictors for outbreaks of anomalous activities, hostile attacks, and other security breaches in cyberspace.
Citation Information
Robin Gandhi, Anup Sharma, William Mahoney, William Sousan, et al.. "The Social, Political, Economic, and Cultural Dimensions of Cyber Attacks" IEEE Technology and Society Vol. 30 Iss. 1 (2010) p. 28 - 38
Available at: