"The Perfect Weapon" (2020 release; 87 min.) takes a look a the history of cyberwarfare. As the film opens, we are in "2007" and President Bush is contemplating his options on what to do with Iran. Someone mentions to him that in cooperation with Israel, the US is able to plant malware into Iran's nuclear facilities. W. likes that option, which is surprisingly successful. Eventually Iran discovers it, and realizes that it can also use cyber to strike back... At this point we are 10 min. into the film.
Couple of comments: this is the latest documentary directed by John Maggio, whose previous work includes, among others, The Newspaperman: The Life and Times of Ben Bradlee as well as Panic: The Untold Story of the 2009 Financial Crisis. Here he looks at the rapid rise of a fairly new phenomenon: cyberwarfare, in all of its different forms including ransomware. Starting in 2007, we get what amounts to a Cyberwarfare 101 introductory course, hitting all of the 'greatest hits', including Iran's attack on the Sands casino empire, North Korea's attack on Sony Pictures, Russia's attack on the DNC, the global NotPetya ransomware attack, and culminating with this year's cyber activities by China regarding the coronavirus. The lesson is very clear: it's a brand new world out there, and war is more often than not conducted digitally. This is an okay and mostly an a-political documentary, but not one that blew me away.
"The Perfect Weapon" premiered recently on HBO and is now available on HBO On Demand (where I caught it the other day) and other streaming services. If you have any interest in cyberwarfare or geopolitics, I'd readily suggest you check this out and draw your own conclusion.
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