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Wednesday, February 2, 2005

February 2005
By Robert K. Ackerman

The second and busiest day of West 2005, the annual conference and exposition sponsored by AFCEA International and the U.S. Naval Institute, featured a full day of speeches and panels. While the discussions may not have been as contentious as on the first day, many of the topics aired by speakers and panelists touched on common themes.

Tuesday, February 1, 2005

February 2005
By Robert K. Ackerman

West 2005, the annual conference and exposition sponsored by AFCEA International and the U.S. Naval Institute, opened with a series of controversial speeches and panel discussions. The three days of conferences, speakers, panels and courses began with the Marine Band playing music ranging from marches to swing jazz. This proved to be something of a metaphor for the ideas that were exchanged on this first day. Being held February 1-3 in San Diego, this year's event mixed current events with prognostications in its program, "Beyond Iraq; How Do We Get Transformation Right?"

Steve Cooper, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

February 2005
By Steve Cooper, Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security became the 15th cabinet department in January 2003, consolidating 22 agencies and more than 180,000 people under one unified organization. Prior to creation of the department, no single federal department had homeland security as its primary objective. One can only imagine the challenges it faces as a brand new department in this age of technology. The department's staff is confronted every day with building the enterprise architecture, developing its geospatial capabilities, enhancing its cybersecurity and improving its wireless technologies.

Government Must Step Up And Lead Cyberspace Homeland Security

February 2005
By Vice Adm. Herbert A. Browne, USN (Ret.)

The attacks of September 11, 2001, changed Free World society forever. The terrorist slaughter brought home the concept that no oceans, no mountains, no national borders will deter evildoers from attacking innocents around the globe.

Washington Police Take Command To the Next Level

February 2005
By Robert K. Ackerman

The focal point for national efforts to combine federal and local law enforcement security activities can be found just a few blocks from the White House in the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department headquarters. The police charged with patrolling the nation's capital are finding that conventional police work is proving far more useful in dealing with terrorist threats than anticipated. And, the department's Joint Operations Command Center, or JOCC, serves both as a center for tracking conventional crime and as a base for coordinating multigovernmental responses to violent demonstrations and terrorism in the nation's capital.

Consolidation Shapes An Evolving Industry

February 2005
By Henry S. Kenyon

The homeland security market is undergoing a major shift away from individual products and systems to integrated, solutions-based offerings. A combination of business mergers and new technologies is the major force behind this change. Companies have consolidated critical sectors of the market, creating a business environment where broad suites of complementary services have an edge over narrowly focused products.

Coast Guard Seeks Maritime Omniscience

February 2005
By Maryann Lawlor

The U.S. Coast Guard is going on the offensive with a transformational initiative that represents a fundamental shift in how the service operates. Rather than serving primarily in a response mode, the service is taking a proactive approach to understanding the global maritime space so it can assess any vessel that could affect the safety, security, economy or environment of the United States. To accomplish this task, the Coast Guard will be relying on technologies that help track watercraft, distinguish normal activity from potential threats and provide this information to the people and organizations that need it.

New Tools Keep Terrorists at Bay

February 2005
By Henry S. Kenyon

Smart surveillance systems soon will make it difficult for militants to infiltrate mass transit facilities and secure installations. These technologies, along with advanced foreign-media monitoring and first-responder training applications, provide government and law enforcement organizations with a crucial edge against terrorism.

Debunking Information Security Myths

February 2005
By Maryann Lawlor

Viruses, worms, hackers, spam, disgruntled employees, flawed software, terrorists-cyberspace is rife with danger, but defending information has some pitfalls of its own. Information security specialists are the front-line warriors in this battlespace, and they may be making important decisions about which weapons to use based on misconceptions often promulgated by security product vendors. Industry experts have taken a closer look at some commonly held information assurance beliefs and claim that many are little more than myths.

Air Force Flies Into Network-Centric Airspace

February 2005
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. Air Force is building on new capabilities tested in Afghanistan and Iraq with a push for networked operations that exceeds many of the dreams of air combat planners of only a few years ago. New warfighting technologies in the pipeline for years are being melded with advanced sensors, data processing and information systems to produce a networked force that increasingly resembles a multicellular organism working to be the dominant life form in its environment.

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