Cybersecurity

July 19, 2016
By Joe Kim

It wasn’t too long ago that the Defense Department embarked on a Cybersecurity Discipline Implementation Plan identifying specific tasks that department’s IT personnel must perform to reinforce basic cybersecurity requirements identified in policies, directives and orders across the agency.

The plan, publicly unveiled in March after being amended, segments tasks into four key “lines of effort” to strengthen cybersecurity initiatives:

July 18, 2016

The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate will host two industry days to provide additional insights to the mobile and cellular industry and researchers about the Mobile Threats and Defenses request for information (RFI).

July 14, 2016

The U.S. Army is testing how cyberwarriors adjust to morphing cyber threats and electromagnetic warfare (EW) attacks during its Cyber Quest 2016, an exercise now underway at the Cyber Center of Excellence at Fort Gordon, Georgia. The event examines concepts and products that could influence future technologies and requirements as well as other Army and Defense Department exercises and experiments.

July 12, 2016
By Bob Kimball

It’s no exaggeration to say the networking industry is going through a period of near-unprecedented change. The explosion of software defined network (SDN) concepts over the past few years brings great promise for new networking capabilities and increased economies of scale. The rapid adoption of SDN and network functions virtualization (NFV) by global telecommunications service providers will continue to drive the rapid evolution and standardization. Additionally, SDN will bring many benefits to enterprise securities yet to be fully explored or imagined.

A New Security Approach

July 1, 2016
By Robert K. Ackerman
Romanian soldiers at a Romanian air base render honors with U.S. forces commemorating the 74th anniversary of the 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor. Romania’s growing activities with fellow NATO members include greater information sharing on cyberspace.

A nation that once was part of the Soviet bloc now finds itself on the front lines of unrest in Ukraine, territorial disputes in the Black Sea and state-sponsored attacks in cyberspace. Romania, now a stalwart member of NATO and the European Union, is playing an increasing role in cybersecurity, both regionally and internationally. It is passing a national cybersecurity law and reaching out to assist other nations, directly and indirectly, with cyber defense. 

June 9, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
NATO officials highlight several business initiatives to meet future needs during the NITEC 2016 cyber conference in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

Industry said, “Show me the money,” and NATO obliged.

Officials shared several key business initiatives to meet future NATO needs during the three-day NITEC 2016 cyber conference, informing industry members about 3 billion euros ($3.4 billion) worth of upcoming business opportunities and contract work.

June 9, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Katrin Suder, state secretary at the German Federal Ministry of Defense says cybersecurity is a game changer. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

Cybersecurity reaches far beyond processes to make doing business easier—it’s the “game changer” to counter real consequences that threaten everyday life, said Katrin Suder, state secretary at the German Federal Ministry of Defense.

“Cyber attacks are no more science fiction,” Suder said. “They are real and will become even more critical in the future. The trajectory [of safeguarding networks] is not going in the right direction.” 

June 7, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Estonian president Toomas Hendrik Ilves addresses attendees on the inaugural day of the three-day NITEC 2016 conference in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

NATO is dangling roughly 3 billion euros ($3.4 billion) in funding for future cyber-based initiatives to match—and then surpass—the increasingly sophisticated attacks against its 28-member alliance, officials announced Tuesday on the inaugural day of the NITEC 2016 conference.

Increased Russian aggression, instability in Europe’s south, the Syrian refugee crisis and evolving cyberthreats all have contributed toward new strategic realities, but also jockey for the same pot of limited financial resources—mobilizing the alliance to strengthen collaborations with industry for vital solutions. 

June 8, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Defense Deparment CIO Terry Halvorsen addresses the NITEC 2016 conference in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

The key to cybersecurity woes might be found in the relationships created between government and industry, the Defense Department’s chief information officer said. 

Partnerships might be the "secret weapon to success," particularly in the IT world, Terry Halvorsen offered during his keynote address on day two of the NITEC 2016 cyber conference in Tallinn, Estonia, presented by the NCI Agency and AFCEA Europe and organized in cooperation with the Estonian Ministry of Defense.

June 8, 2016
By Sandra Jontz

The world needs at least 1.5 million cybersecurity professionals who do not exist—a labor shortage created by the increase in frequency and severity of cyber attacks and employers all fishing from the same pond, said Michael Cameron, vice president for business development, cyber and cybersecurity at Leidos, at the NITEC 2016 cyber conference.

Solutions exist to help bridge the gap, including a detailed effort developed by the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Careers and Studies, a collaboration between the Department of Homeland Security, National Institute of Standards and Technology, and National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education.

June 7, 2016
by Sandra Jontz
Lt. Gen. Riho Terras, commander of Estonian Defense Forces, warns that Europe is too reactionary to world events while speaking at the NITEC 2016 cyber conference in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

Europe is asleep at the wheel and needs an awakening before it crashes, warned Lt. Gen. Riho Terras, commander of Estonian Defense Forces. 

The reactionary nature of the continent’s militaries has caught leaders unawares far too many times already, and forces no longer can afford to leave proactive measures to someone else, Gen. Terras shared during the inaugural day of NITEC 2016, a cyber conference being held this week in Tallinn, Estonia. 

“What happens in the world comes as a surprise for Europe,” said Gen. Terras, who pulled no punches when laying out examples of when European leaders were caught off guard.

June 7, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Ingvar Parnamae, undersecretary for defense investments for the Estonian Ministry of Defense shares some of the Baltic nation's defense challenges during NITEC 2016, running June 7-9 in Tallinn, Estonia. Photo by Marcos Fernandez Marin, NCI Agency

Small nation-state budgets aren’t always such a bad thing, offered Ingvar Parnamae, undersecretary for defense investments for the Estonian Ministry of Defense. 

It forces leaders to make good choices—it is hoped. 

June 6, 2016
By Beverly Mowery Cooper

A security framework established by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) is serving as a template for protecting networks using a threat-centric approach. The framework establishes five core functions in sequential order, and they are applicable across all network sectors.

The five core functions are Identify, Protect, Detect, Respond and Recover. Some of them can be bundled as part of an overall cybersecurity program, which is an approach already being adopted by commercial security providers.

May 23, 2016
By Max Emelianov

April marked one of the largest data breaches in history, with 11.5 million confidential documents leaked online. How did it happen—and what can we learn from it?  

By now, you’ve probably heard all about the so-termed Panama Papers, one of the largest data leaks in history. The law firm Mossack Fonseca, a firm that specialized in helping clients create offshore financial holdings, reported that 11.5 million confidential documents leaked online, comprising more than 2 terabytes of data.

May 18, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Vint Cerf, touted as one of the “fathers of the Internet” and now vice president and chief Internet evangelist for Google, speaks at AFCEA International/George Mason University Critical Issues in C4I Symposium.

Is the emergence of robotics raising a generation of meat puppets? Are you a meat puppet?

While the questions posed by Bob Gourley, co-founder of Cognitio, drew a little laughter from attendees at the AFCEA International/George Mason University Critical Issues in C4I Symposium, they should provide serious fodder for discussion on the people whose jobs are about to be replaced by robots. 

“I hope you laughed at that the term, but I hope that that makes it memorable for you,” Gourley said of slang adopted from sci-fi novels. “I hope it leads to a serious thought … about the people whose jobs are being displaced, because it’s going to be in the millions.” 

May 12, 2016
By Sandra Jontz

The Defense Department's continued collaboration to streamline the whole of the military's information technology networks and systems, known as the Joint Information Environment, tops leaders' agendas and fiscal spending plans—now available with a caveat for decision makers, officials said.

May 10, 2016
By Ray Rothrock

Let’s face it—we have a lot to learn about cybersecurity. For weeks, the FBI and Apple squared off in an epic and public battle over encryption—the Holy Grail for cybersecurity warriors. “Help us break the iPhone,” said the FBI. “The risk is too great, too many will be harmed,” Apple retorted. But the battle was over before the parties fully engaged. The FBI found someone to hack the iPhone belonging to one of the San Bernardino shooters and said, “Never mind, problem solved.”

Does this make you feel secure? With attacks launched every day, I don’t think so.

May 6, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
Intelligence and cybersecurity experts discuss emerging cyber threats at an AFCEA EPIC presentation, with growing concern over wearables and the Internet of Things.

Should private companies be able to—and maybe more importantly—hack back? 

The question drew enthusiastic responses from panelists and the audience during at presentation Thursday by AFCEA’s Emerging Professionals in Intelligence Committee (EPIC) on intelligence and cybersecurity.  

April 7, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
DARPA's Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Continuous Trail Unmanned Vessel (ACTUV) prototype makes a dry run in Portland, Oregon. Officials christened Sea Hunter on Thursday.

The Defense Department's futuristic research agency reached a huge milestone in its robot sea vessel program Thursday, christening the unmanned prototype "Sea Hunter" and entering a two-year extended test phase.

March 23, 2016
By Sandra Jontz
U.S. Air Force leaders discuss the defense of key terrain in cyber operations during a panel at AFCEA's inaugural TechNet Air 2016 symposium in San Antonio.

When it comes to the Air Force's cyber protection teams, or CPTs as they are better known, officials are at the stage now where they’re building the aircraft while flying it. 

It is all part of a growing effort to mature defensive cyberspace operations, and CPT members still are writing the playbook on how they define, map, prioritize and help defend key terrain. 

Pages