Germany sets up military cyber unit - Wikimedia

Germany has announced that it will be setting up a specialist department to fight cyber crime.

The cyber warfare unit, which has taken six years of preparation, is lagging behind other countries.

According to the India Economic Times, the Computer Network Operations (CNO) unit is part of Germany's military. It will be used to counteract as well as attack hackers who try to destroy key installations or engage in espionage activities.

Operating from a location near Bonn, the unit has been set up to fight attacks from China, which German officials have said have been raging for many years.

However, a security specialist anonymously warned that the country could have acted too late and is putting its eggs into one basket.

"Countries are slowly waking up to the fact that cyber threats are nearly as important as nuclear ones," the source told Techeye.

"Unlike unleashing nuclear weapons, hackers can easily strike, bringing down important government sites or stealing information," the source said.  "Germany is on the right tracks with its new unit but it's trailing behind the likes of the US and UK, which seemed to have their own departments up and running a while back.

"The main nature of this unit is to ward off the threats from China, but countries need to realise that it's not just this behemoth that is likely to attack," the source said. "If they really want to ensure they are safe they should look at countries with a political vengeance against them - after all, it's not just China that's "at war" with the world."