US wouldn't stand up to cyber attacks -

America is so vulnerable to cyber attacks that it might deter US leaders from going to war with other nations, a former top US cybersecurity official has warned.

Richard Clarke, a top adviser to three presidents, has given a dire assessment of America's cybersecurity and said that the country simply can't protect its critical networks.

According to Physorg, if anyone in the axis of evil decided to attack the US, its critical systems would roll over in a matter of minutes.

China, North Korea, Iran and Russia could retaliate against the US's military might by launching devastating cyberattacks that could destroy power grids, banking networks or transportation systems, he said.

Some of the problem, he claims, is that the US military has spent a fortune on kit which could be disabled before they get to a battlefield.

While the US might be able to blow up a nuclear plant or a terrorist training centre somewhere, a number of countries could strike back with a cyberattack and "the entire US economic system could be crashed in retaliation".

Clarke said that if the US goes to war with a cybersecurity-conscious, cybersecurity-capable enemy then it is unlikely that any of its stuff is going to work.

He said that the US also needs to make it clear to countries such as China that efforts to use computer-based attacks to steal high-tech American data will be punished.

Although if it lobs a missile its way, the Chinese could close the land of the free by refusing to make any of its technology.