Event Coverage

December 11, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Warfighting may be serious business, but game playing has its place. Lt. Gen. John A. Toolan, USMC, commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific, told that to some young junior reserve officer training corps students attending TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held December 9-11 in Honolulu.

Urging them to consider a life in the military, he said the service needs the 19-year-old’s smartphone mentality. He also told them to continue their game playing as an introduction to the future that will help the military when they enter it.

“You young folks … keep playing “Call of Duty”—it’s important,” the general said.

December 11, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Being able to respond and adapt to changes in combat conditions is as important in cyberspace as it is in the battlespace. Forces must train for changes amid contested environments in cyberspace as they do in conventional battle.

This point was raised in a panel on assured interoperability on the final day of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held December 9-11 in Honolulu. Panel moderator Rear Adm. Nancy Norton, USN, J-6, U.S. Pacific Command, emphasized the need for maneuver warfare in cyberspace.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The new social media technologies, as well as old ones such as email, do not work as well as face-to-face communications for leaders reaching their workers, according to a panel of military and civilian leaders. The Leadership/Young AFCEANs panel on day two of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11, explored many facets of successful and failed leadership.

All the panelists agreed that leaders who rely on digital means as their primary method of communication are shorting their workers. Email in particular came in for harsh criticism.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

An emerging capabilities coordination cell (EC3) is the mechanism by which the U.S. Army Pacific (USARPAC) seeks to incorporate commercial innovation to meet its mission needs. The EC3 approach is integrated with overall Army plans to upgrade the force over the next 11 years.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

A new system finally may enable high-level information sharing among coalition partners by eliminating fears that the wrong partners might access another partner’s valuable data. The Regional Domain Awareness joint concept technology demonstration would allow unclassified information sharing with built-in access control.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Even when interoperability challenges are not technical in nature, technology can help overcome the problems. Using cognitive interoperability may allow personnel to avoid thorny cultural issues that plague many attempts at interoperability.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The virtual landscape and ongoing technology trends favor cyber attackers throughout the digital realm. And, that imbalance is likely to worsen as more state players exploit new capabilities for inflicting severe damage through cyberspace.

This issue was explored by a panel on cyber and intelligence on day two of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11. All the panelists agreed that the deck is stacked in favor of cybermarauders, and that situation is likely to worsen.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The most dangerous threat to the United States may come from cyberspace rather than terrorists, according to a panel of experts. A cyberspace attack could wreak damage that would change the nature of the country, they suggested.

This was one of many issues discussed by a panel on cyber and intelligence on day two of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11. The panelists offered that cyber and terrorism are the most realistic threats facing the United States.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman
Gen. Vincent Brooks, USA, commanding general of the U.S. Army, Pacific, describes the challenges facing coalition assured interoperability.

TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014

The SIGNAL Magazine Online Show Daily

Day 1

Quote of the Day:

“For mobility, we have to start thinking intercollaborability.”—Terry Halvorsen, Defense Department acting chief information officer

 

As the only trusted major power in the Asia-Pacific region, the United States literally finds itself at the heart of all coalition networking activities. Amid the pivot to the Pacific, the nation also is striving to modernize the force while it confronts budgetary uncertainties domestically and abroad.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. Cyber Command’s Cyber Mission Force is beginning to enter the fray, but it still lacks full strength and expertise. Teams are being assigned to combatant commands as quickly as possible, yet their missions are still taking shape.

Lt. Gen. James "Kevin" McLaughlin, USAF, deputy commander, U.S. Cyber Command, described the status of the Cyber Mission Force to the breakfast audience at day two of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11. Gen. McLaughlin explained that half the teams focus on defending, while the other half focus on initiating activities.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. secretary of defense recently approved a Department of Defense Information Network (DODIN) concept and Joint Force Headquarters DODIN Operations within the U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) headed by the director of the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA). The new organization falls under CYBERCOM, but it is headed by Lt. Gen. Ronnie D. Hawkins Jr., USAF, DISA’s director.

Lt. Gen. James McLaughlin, USAF, deputy commander, U.S. Cyber Command, explained this construct to the breakfast audience during the second day of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held December 9-11 in Honolulu. It represents a shift in focus for cybersecurity.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Achieving effective cybersecurity will require instant visibility across the entire defense network. As attacks become more destructive, programs under development such as joint regional security stacks (JRSS) become all the more important, according to the deputy director of the U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM).

Lt. Gen. James McLaughlin, USAF, described this challenge to the breakfast audience at day two of TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11. Many cyber attacks today take ownership of systems and destroy information, and any lag in response time is detrimental to the network.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The U.S. Defense Department will be greeting Christmas this year with its first wireless network inside the Pentagon. On December 23, a test network will be switched on to help lay the groundwork for departmentwide wireless connectivity.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

On Monday, December 15, the U.S. military services will be notified that they no longer have to go through the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) for cloud services, according to the Defense Department’s acting chief information officer (CIO). Terry Halvorsen told the Tuesday luncheon audience at TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014 in Honolulu, being held December 9-11, that Monday’s memo will tell the services they have the authority to buy cloud services without DISA’s approval.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The success of the Joint Information Environment (JIE) may depend on the successful implementation of the Joint Regional Security Stacks, or JRSS, according to the Defense Department acting chief information officer (CIO). Terry Halvorsen told the Tuesday luncheon audience at TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held December 9-11 in Honolulu, that JRSS implementation is his office’s top priority for the JIE.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

A new term for interoperability may have emerged from the office of the U.S. Defense Department’s chief information officer (CIO). Intercollaborability was described to the Tuesday luncheon audience at TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held December 9-11 in Honolulu, by Terry Halvorsen, Defense Department acting CIO.

Halvorsen explained that cooperation happens when people want to protect their piece of the pie, while collaboration occurs when people think there is more of the pie. Intercollaborability describes the combination of collaboration and interoperability.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Ashton Carter, the nominee to replace Chuck Hagel as secretary of defense, should have better access to the White House than did his predecessor, said a former Defense Department official. John Grimes, former assistant secretary of defense for networks and information integration, offered that Carter will need to be able to reach beyond the barriers that Hagel faced to be effective in a time of great change in the department.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Easily configurable networks that can accept a variety of technical capabilities with secure links are at the top of the wish list for the commanding general of the U.S. Army, Pacific. Gen. Vincent Brooks, USA, described the need for this flexible networking to the audience at the opening breakfast for TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014 in Honolulu, December 9-11.

December 10, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

Establishing a clear and effective mission partner environment (MPE) will require careful planning to avoid the development of new silos amid the Joint Information Environment (JIE). Ultimately, a Defense Department planning group may hold the key to success.

December 9, 2014
By Robert K. Ackerman

The United States must be the key player in the Asia-Pacific region without having a regional NATO-type alliance, says the commanding general of the U.S. Army, Pacific. Speaking at the opening breakfast for TechNet Asia-Pacific 2014, being held in Honolulu December 9-11, Gen. Vincent Brooks, USA, described how any coalition in the region must be ad hoc and the United States must be at its nexus.

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