I don't know about anything really heating up....this type of activity has always been going on, just in different formats. In the cold war, it was spy vs. spy (ya, kinda like Mad Magazine ;-) ), bugs, phone taps, covert drops, microfiche, poison pens, poison rings, umbrella darts....you know...all that cool stuff we see in older James Bond movies. NOW we have advanced technology. You are seeing the same activity, but in a technology based format...hacking, probing, and generalized terrorization of the world markets by crashing sites. I can't do any of it, but to people that know what they are doing, there is a challenge to some of it, some of it would be easier. Some is malicious, some is "lets see if I CAN do it....and not get caught". There is nothing new here, except methods and the WHO.... Used to be Russia/USSR, East Germany, Poland, Etc..... now it is ISIS, China, and others.....(plus maybe a few of the old standards?!)
Cutting multiple Fiber optic lines is no accident. It seems like someone trying to either probe response time, or trying to divert attention away from another intrusion attempt. The fact they were able to infiltrate a secure area to cut these lines should be a major cause of concern to everyone. I think a common misconception when it comes to hacking is that all of it is done remotely, but actually getting hands on with the equipment (especially a backbone connection) is a gold mine to a hostile force or individual.
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