Washington Post July 4, 2010 Pg. 19
The alleged Russian spy ring is a pleasant summer distraction (Anna Chapman — call your agent!) and a wonderful opportunity to use the phrase femme fatale. But if you want to ponder a 21st-century intelligence puzzle this July 4 weekend, turn your attention to cyber-espionage — where our adversaries can steal in a few seconds what it took an old-fashioned spy network years to collect.
First, though, let's think about what the Russian “illegals” were up to in their suburban spy nests. U.S. intelligence officials think it's partly that the Russians just love running illegal networks. This has been part of their tradecraft since the 1920s, and it enabled many of their most brilliant operations, from Rudolf Abel to Julius and Ethel Rosenberg. The FBI finds it hard to break its cultural habits, and so does Russia's intelligence service, the SVR.
See Also: Neil Stephenson in SNOWCRASH (first edition late 1980's),
Winn Schwartau in Terminal Compromise: Computer Terrorism is a Networked Society and then in INFORMATION WARFARE: Chaos on the Electronic Superhighway (early 1990's), and
top observers in 1994 in a Memorandum to the National Information Infrastructure (NII) “czar.”