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The Internet's Vulnerabilities Are Built Into Its Infrastructure

November 2009
By Paul A. Strassmann

Protection of the Global Information Grid now has evolved into global asymmetric warfare. Engaging in this combat is the principal mission of the U.S. Cyber Command because the infrastructure of the Internet is fundamentally insecure, and the U.S. Defense Department depends increasingly on this cyber highway to function.
There are tens of thousands of defenders of the Internet infrastructure who must be vigilant around the clock, everywhere. Meanwhile, small teams of attackers can strike undetected whenever they choose, from wherever they may be in the world. This is why the contests between the defenders and the aggressors meet the definition of asymmetric warfare in its extreme form.

Network-Centric Systems Need Standards and Metrics

July 2009
By Paul A. Strassmann

Network systems are similar to icebergs. Less than 10 percent of their volume is visible to the user of an application. Almost all of the hidden code, measured in hundreds of thousands of lines of logic, is invisible in the operating system, in the database management software, in security safeguards and in communication routines. The problem with such software is that for each application—and the U.S. Defense Department has more than 7,000 major software projects—contractors will develop the hidden coding to suit separate requirements.

Cloud Computing Could Support Network-Centric Operation

June 2009
By Bob Gourley

Cloud computing could give a major assist to the U.S. Defense Department’s information technology strategy for implementing network-centric operations.


Security Initiatives Drive Technology Development

February 2006
By Braun Jones and Nick Bundy

Biometric scanners, gamma ray detectors and unmanned underwater vehicles seem like topics reserved for futuristic action-adventure movies. However, these technologies are being embraced by agencies under the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's umbrella. Technologies that serve to track, trace and contain or detain potentially harmful materials and individuals are being studied, tested and integrated into many homeland security activities.

Bolstering Information Sharing Through The Cross-Domain

November 2005
By Adm. Leighton W. Smith Jr., USN (Ret.)

Accredited, tested solutions could allow military decision makers and intelligence analysts to access information and make decisions simultaneously using information that resides in multiple security classifications. However, although the U.S. Defense Department is moving forward to address information-sharing challenges, it has encountered difficulties in proving and certifying these technologies in a testbed environment.

Trading Partners Clash On Data Privacy Policy

August 1999
By Michelle L. Hankins

The debate between the European Union and the United States over protecting personal information represents a fundamental cultural difference that could alter the future growth of electronic commerce. Throughout this debate, these differences have threatened to bring data transfers from within the European Union to the United States to a grinding halt.

Online Instruction Strategies Require Close Examination

January 2000
By Maryann Lawlor

The smell of fat crayons, the snap of three-ring binders and the crack of book spines as they open for the first time bring back memories of those old school days. Students today, both in the classroom and on the job, are more familiar with the hum of a hard drive and glow of a monitor screen. One thing, however, has not changed--the up-front expenses for an education rarely reflect the final cost.

Achieving the Mobile Internet

March 2001
By Ken Keane

Discussions between commercial and government organizations about spectrum management are coming to a head as third-generation wireless devices that combine today's desktop terminal features and functions in a shirt-pocket-sized handset are poised to enter the marketplace. This communications evolution poses some critical issues for regulators as well as the military. Experts not only must confront the traditional spectrum allocation challenges, but they also must consider separation, partitioning, sharing and reallocation. The policy issue may reduce itself, on the one hand, to minimizing the costs of securing new spectrum for third-generation devices and, on the other hand, to the desire for greater global harmonization.

Diverse Groups Share Information Assurance Quandaries

August 2002
By Joseph McKendrick

Government agencies and commercial companies that are striving to share data to protect citizens or improve service to customers are discovering that as access to data increases, information security challenges grow exponentially. To address this concern, trusted security approaches emerging from government applications offer information assurance at both the operating-system and relational-database-management levels.


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