NewsBriefs

December 17, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The extent of the global cyber attack by purported Russian threat actors has the U.S. government forming a new group to provide a coordinated response. Credit: Shutterstock/Alexander Limbach

The Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, or CISA, reported yesterday that the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Office of the Director of Intelligence and CISA itself had created a Cyber Unified Coordination Group. The move was necessary given the alarming cyber compromise, a Trojan-style attack by threat-actor UNC2452 with ties to Russia. The attack, identified by FireEye, reached North American, European, Asian and Middle Eastern governments, technology firms, telecommunications, consulting companies and other entities, the company said. 

December 16, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s new pilot program to assess how radio frequency geospatial data and analytical solutions from the commercial sector is looking promising, the agency says. So far it is trying out HawkEye 360 LLC's global spectrum sensing platform to identify and map radio frequency emitters. Credit: HawkEye 360

So far, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s (NGA's) pilot to assess how radio frequency (RF) geospatial data and analytical solutions from the commercial sector could support the agency’s mission is going well, according to the Springfield, Virginia-based intelligence arm. The so-called Predictive GEOINT Prototype supports an agile development approach, the  NGA said.

Although the program is limited in scope, the NGA is already initially benefiting from the RF data coming from HawkEye 360 LLC that is being delivered to analysts at the NGA and the U.S. combatant commands. The company’s data and analytics are meant to augment the agency’s existing geospatial intelligence activities.

December 2, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Lockheed Martin's SBIRS GEO-5 satellite is tested in a vacuum chamber at the company's Sunnyvale, California, production facility in April. The U.S. Space Force has ruled that the satellite is now ready for launching in 2021. Credit: Lockheed Martin

The fifth Space Based Infrared System Geosynchronous Earth Orbit satellite, known as SBIRS GEO-5, is ready for launch in 2021. The U.S. Space Force deemed complete the high priority program satellite, which will provide worldwide missile warning capability to the U.S. military. The service’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) Production Corps at Los Angeles Air Force Base, California, and industry partner Lockheed Martin Space, in Sunnyvale, California, prepared the important warning system in record time.

November 2, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The new $4.4 Billion Defense Enterprise Office Solutions blanket purchase agreement will provide comprehensive cloud-based enterprise capabilities, including productivity tools. Credit: Shutterstock/jijomathaidesigners

The General Services Administration (GSA) and the Defense Department reported on October 30 that the $4.4 billion, 10-year Defense Enterprise Office Solutions (DEOS) Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) had been awarded again to General Dynamics Information Technology.

The original DEOS BPA award in August 2019 was heavily protested. The GSA then amended the solicitation, received and evaluated new quotes and according to the GSA, “made an award to the vendor that was determined to provide the best value to the government.”

October 30, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The Defense Department's new electromagnetic spectrum strategy looks to bolster the nation's associated operational environment and security. Credit: Shutterstock/Fouad A. Saad

The U.S. is facing an increasingly congested, constrained and contested electromagnetic spectrum. Adversaries are challenging the United State’s dominance across the air, land, sea, space and cyberspace domains, which threatens our reliance on the spectrum. And because the United States depends on electromagnetic spectrum for much more than warfighting purposes, our nation’s economic wellbeing is at stake, says Defense Secretary Mark Esper.

October 14, 2020
Posted by: Kimberly Underwood
Lt. Col. Natashia Coleman (c) assumes the role as product lead for the Unified Network Capabilities and Integration (UNCI) office created in January. The UNCI office is consolidating tactical network integration efforts to support future capabilities, including the pursuit of Sustainment Tactical Network. Credit: U.S. Army photo by Lynn Harkins, PM TN Graphics

On October 14 the U.S. Army released a request for information to industry about how commercially-managed satellite communication (SATCOM) services could support the service’s logistics network modernization efforts in constructing a Sustainment Tactical Network, also known as the STN.

The STN, meant for general purpose users, will include new baseband, local transport and antenna hardware solutions. In addition, STN systems will provide the network connectivity for sustainment, medical and administrative information to be exchanged on the battlefield across multiple echelons, according to a statement from the U.S. Army’s Program Execute Office Command, Control and Communications – Tactical (PEO C3T).

September 1, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The Five Eyes nations, including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom and the United States, conducted extensive joint research on cyber breeches, culminating in an incident response playbook for the extended community of partners and network administrators. Credit: Shutterstock/Metamorworks

The cybersecurity representatives of the so-called Five Eyes intelligence partners are working together to improve cyber event incident response across the extended community of the countries of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom and the United States. 

August 26, 2020
Posted by: Kimberly Underwood
The Space and Missile Systems Center’s (SMC's) Wideband Global Satellite-10 (WGS-10) is encapsulated in the Delta IV rocket for its launch in March 2019 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. SMC just completed a test of a key anti-jamming technology that it plans to add to satellites WGS 1 through WGS 10. Credit: Van Ha, SMC Public Affairs.

On August 26, the U.S. Space Force announced that its Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) had successfully completed a key test of an anti-jamming capability designed for its Wideband Global Satellite (WGS) Communication platform.

The new solution, known as MAJE, or Mitigation and Anti-Jam Enhancement, includes both software and hardware upgrades for the Global SATCOM Configuration Control Element (GSCCE) ground system, which is operated by the U.S. Army.

“MAJE will double the anti-jam SATCOM capabilities for six Geographic Combatant Commands,” added Col. John Dukes, USAF, SMC’s Geosynchronous Polar Orbit Division senior materiel leader.

August 21, 2020
By Kimberly Underwood
Army Gen. James Dickinson accepts command of the U.S. Space Command on August 20, 2020 at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado. Credit: DOD Photo by Lewis Carlyle

In a changing of command ceremony yesterday at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado, Gen. James Dickinson, USA, stepped into the role as commander of the U.S. Space Command.

Gen. Dickinson takes over from Gen. John Raymond, USAF, who ushered the new Space Command—which is the nation’s 11th Combatant Command—through its reestablishment last August. Relinquishing one of his two hats, Gen. Raymond will still continue in his role as the first Chief of Space Operations for the U.S. Space Force.

May 19, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Credit: Shutterstock/Pogorelova Olga

The Space Force has announced that the planned satellite hacking challenge known as Space Security Challenge 2020: Hack-A-Sat would proceed as planned, but in a virtual format due to the pandemic. The Department of the Air Force and the Defense Digital Service's (DDS's) event includes an online qualification event May 22-24, followed by a final August 7-9. During the final, participants will attempt to reverse-engineer representative ground-based and on-orbit satellite system components to overcome planted “flags” or software code.

April 15, 2020
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
North Korea's sponsored malicious cyber operations are an attempt to raise funds for weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles, the U.S. government warns. Credit: Shutterstock/hotsum

The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the State, Treasury and Homeland Security departments issued a detailed 12-page advisory on April 15 alerting the nation to an increased threat of malicious cyber activity by North Korea. The U.S. government’s advisory warned financial entities in particular of aggressive action by North Korea intended to harm the financial system, as well as threats to critical infrastructure.