Forge, Feb 2003, 25.95, 384 pp.
In San Antonio, terrorists access the computer program that regulates the flow of natural gas. They dramatically increase the pressure on the system resulting in uncountable leaks into private homes and other buildings, which in turn leads to numerous explosions throughout the area. Thousands die and The Alamo City turns into a prison cemetery reminiscent of the fire bombings of World War II. More than just the United States is in a panic as much of the developed world wonders if their home will be part of the next assault.
Two decades of experience as a counterterrorist fails to prepare Tom Graham for the type and magnitude of this attack. He knows the old rules are gone and he needs outside the societal crypt type thinkers and a software Einstein to prevent future rapes via the American cyber-infrastructure. Tom mobilizes FBI Special Agent Karen Frost and obtains the services of computer guru Michael Patrick Ryan. The war is engaged as the threesome supported by the Federal Counter Cyberterrorism Team try to follow back the hacking path that led to the San Antonio wasteland.
As President Bush claimed Bin Laden the threat after 9/11 and Hussein as the threat in 2002, R.J. Pineiro provides a cautionary tale that describes the seemingly real threat is through cyberspace. The theme of CYBERTERROR is protection to the computer-managed infrastructure is weak and subject to hacking. Though the characters serve more as good guys vs. bad guys stereotypes, this action-packed thriller will haunt the audience with its message of no escape for the innocent if the cyber weaknesses of our support systems is not fixed yesterday.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner