Digital War Defines the State of Cyber Today

April 20, 2016
By Robert K. Ackerman
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Hard-core enemies stop at nothing in the current environment.

Cybermarauders have become so malevolent that today’s environment is nothing less than “cyberwarfare,” according to the director of the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA). Lt. Gen. Alan R. Lynn, USA, told the keynote luncheon audience at Defensive Cyber Operations Symposium (DCOS) 2016, being held in Washington, D.C., April 20-22, that cyber has changed considerably over the past few years.

“The world has changed,” stated Gen. Lynn, who also is the commander, Joint Force Headquarters–Department of Defense Information Network (JFHQ-DODIN). “In cyber, it used to be almost like an intel game—a gentlemanly sport. People would try to break into your network real smoothly, real slowly.

“Today, they don’t care,” he continued. “They’re kicking in the doors, it’s loud and fast, it’s snatch and grab. The gloves are off.

“Today, it’s cyberwarfare, and it’s daily. It’s happening on our networks,” Gen. Lynn declared.

He noted that the JFHQ-DODIN, while up for 15 months, is not fully operational yet. However, it has had nine named military operations and even has deployed to joint environments. He analogizes its operations as “the difference between building an aircraft and flying it. DISA builds the aircraft, and the people [at JFHQ-DODIN] are flying it."

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