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Military asserts right to return cyber attacks

WASHINGTON (AP) - The head of the National Security Agency says the U.S. must fire back against cyber attacks swiftly and strongly and should act to counter or disable a threat even when the identity of the attacker is unknown.

Army Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander also says the U.S. should not be deterred from taking action against countries like Iran and North Korea just because they might launch cyber attacks. Alexander is the Obama administration's nominee to take on additional duties as head of the new Cyber Command.

He laid out his views on the Cyber Command and the military's role in protecting U.S. computer networks in a questionnaire obtained by The Associated Press. The Senate Armed Services Committee will hold a hearing Thursday on his nomination.

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