That bin Laden's heirs are ill-equipped, at the moment, to launch a cyber attack on the United States is clear. If they were able to do so, as analyst James Lewis of the Washington-based Center for Strategic & International Studies told me last year, they would have done so by now.

But the proliferation of technology, even the dangerous kind, is quick. And we must be vigilant.

Vigilance, though, cannot bleed into overreaction.

Clarke has some good recommendations in his book. Pulling our utilities off the public Internet, where they are vulnerable to attack, is a good start. But we can't let Hollywood-ready images of explosive carnage take us too far.

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  Topics: This Just In , Terrorism, Richard Clarke, Osama bin Laden,  More more >
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