TODAY   |  October 12, 2012

Panetta warns US could face ‘cyber Pearl Harbor’

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta delivered a stark warning that the US could soon face a “cyber Pearl Harbor” if the nation doesn’t strengthen digital security. NBC’s Jim Miklaszewski reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> leon panetta is delivering a stark warning that the u.s. could soon face a cyber pearl harbor if the nation doesn't strengthen digital security. nbc's chief pentagon correspondent jim mick cheklaszewski has the very latest.

>> reporter: secretary panta warned cyber attacks on america could be just as destructive as those attacks on 9/11 here in new york and at the pentagon. he warned attacks on america 's critical electric and water systems could actually be devastating, and for the first time pentagon officials are revealing that it was iran behind a series of attacks recently on america 's major banking systems. now, secretary panetta called for a nationwide effort for government and business to build an entire skilled army of cyber warriors to confront this threat, but he had a very ominous warning. he reminded everybody that early warning signs of the 9/11 attacks here in america went largely ignored. he said that cannot happen again, that we are now in a pre- 9/11 moment, and the terrorists are plotting.

>> jim miklaszewski at the pentagon, thanks, jim.