Many papers and books have already been written about security issues of modern telecommunication systems. Although the availability of networks is very important for every organization to stay in business, they are also their Achilles' heel.
Many security holes exist both in software and in hardware, from unprotected wires to high-end software with bugs. Although companies selling the systems are able to fix many security holes immediately, it may take a while until these fixes are applied everywhere. Meanwhile, these security holes leave a system wide open to penetrators.
If somebody really wants to break into a computer system it is almost always possible to some extent. Some organizations are not aware of these problems, others do not care for them, and yet others know about it but are not able to protect themselves adequately.
And even if private companies are able to protect themselves against single attacks of competing firms, they often don't have the technology or know-how to combat the type of advanced technologies governments can throw at them. In a Canadian Security Intelligence Service publication (), a businessman is cited that they can handle the ordinary industrial spy, but in case of spy satellites and sophisticated strategic espionage, only governments are able to combat that.