Given Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, which has been a shock to geopolitical order, and its continued threat to NATO and the United States, the U.S. intelligence community’s (IC's) tracking of Russian activities will remain a significant focus, reported Director Avril Haines, Office of the Director of National Intelligence.
It may take a village to raise a child, as the saying goes, but it can take a whole society to keep a country secure.
The term “whole-of-government” has been popular since at least the early 2000s to describe a multidepartment, multiagency effort to gain an advantage or keep the nation secure. The term has been used, for example, to describe counterterrorism efforts.
MGySgt Scott Stalker, USMC, command senior enlisted leader, U.S. Space Command: It's not just multi-domain operations. It's all domains.#AFCEATechNet
For 25 years, Rear Adm. Michael Studeman, USN, director, J-2, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, has been sounding the warning bell about the government of China and the threat it brings to the world and the United States. The threat is real, and China’s intent is clear, the leader has warned. The United States must now examine the time elements associated with China’s dangerous moves, the intelligence leader says.
The United States military has to broaden its space-based intelligence capabilities, to provide astute situational awareness and analysis to conducting space-related missions, as the threats to the domain rise. Those in the sector have been warning that space had become a threatened domain for the last decade, said Lara Schmidt, principal director, Strategic and Global Awareness Directorate, The Aerospace Corporation. Today there are about 70 nations operating in space in one way or another.
Similar to other members of the intelligence community, the U.S. Space Force is responsible for advancing intelligence-related mission objectives for U.S. national security. The service is performing space-related intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance to provide key information and data to the community. Being part of the intelligence community is an important step for the year-old service, said Maj. Gen. Leah Lauderback, USAF, director, Intelligence Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR), U.S. Space Force, speaking last Friday at a virtual Mitchell Institute event.
Starting this fall, high school students in the state of Georgia will have the unique opportunity to take an elective course in intelligence and national security studies. The class will introduce students to the field of intelligence, the associated activities to gather intelligence, the roles of the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC), national security, the limits and capabilities of intelligence, careers in the field, and how intelligence plays a role in decision-making.
For many in the U.S. intelligence community, choosing the profession was neither a career goal nor even a consideration until later in life. Few set out to join the agencies that comprise the community while in high school or college. This pattern—usually based on a knowledge gap—needs to change immediately to meet the United States’ national imperative for a talented and diverse workforce.
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.
(Third of a three-part series)
The United States must amass a global intelligence capability built around an all-of-nation approach to threat detection and action, says a national security analyst. This includes increasing human intelligence, but it also would entail the intelligence community utilizing the tools it has and then developing a better “brothernet” further out in terms of forecasting.
The National Intelligence University (NIU) has upgraded its curriculum with an enhanced focus on applied data science for intelligence. This thrust, which reflects the changing global threat picture, includes the creation of a certificate program for those seeking to specialize in the discipline.
The Department of Homeland Security interagency National Vetting Center has created an information clearinghouse that automatically checks the names of foreigners applying to come to the United States against highly classified databases in various intelligence agencies. The clearinghouse relies on a cloud architecture that agencies are building to share information and lays the foundation for powerful new tools that could leverage artificial intelligence and predictive analytics to help find foreign travelers who might be a threat to U.S. national security.
The intelligence officers responsible for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command (INDOPACOM) organizations played their China cards face up as they described a nation bent on world domination at the expense of Western values and freedoms. In an overflow panel at TechNet Indo-Pacific 2019, being held November 19-21 in Honolulu, these experts—called the “2s” for their billet designation—cited facts to buttress their observations that China has abandoned its longtime cover stories and is now waging all-out competition with the institutions and nations that defined the cooperative postwar era.
Government agencies are working together much more effectively as they counter terrorism and state-sponsored attacks in cyberspace. But more remains to be done as adversaries introduce new tactics and capabilities.
A panel comprising the top U.S. intelligence officials reviewed these issues as they closed out the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on September 5. Their points ranged from foreign interference in U.S. elections to cooperation—or the lack thereof—from industry with the U.S. government.
Foreign countries are likely to continue their cyber-based disinformation campaigns as an inexpensive way of shaping thinking in democracies, according to a panel of experts at the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on September 5. Only a concerted effort by government, the commercial sector and the public can blunt its effects, especially as the 2020 elections loom.
“Disinformation is not the weaponization of knowledge, it’s the weaponization of cognition,” declared Brett Horvath, president, Guardians.ai. “To have a coherent strategy, it has to be built on principles: What are you defending, and what are you attacking?”
The United States is now presenting cyber adversaries with a bill for their malevolent activities. Counter-cyber efforts have joined traditional defensive measures as the intelligence community confronts cybermarauders with greater detection, discovery and prevention.
Several high-ranking intelligence officials described this new tack in combating cyber threats during a panel discussion at the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on September 5. Their observations ranged from election meddling to a potential all-out cyber war.
With space assuming greater importance as a military domain with its own designated command, the U.S. intelligence community must dedicate assets and procedures to providing vital information about space-based operations. For decades, the ultimate high ground was a valuable source of intelligence across the spectrum of national security. Now, its value as an intelligence target is growing as much as its importance as an operational domain.
A panel of military intelligence chiefs was not shy about telling industry what they need from it. Speaking at the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on Wednesday, September 4, these flag officers listed their technology and capability wish list for many attendees from the commercial sector.
“Industry needs to help us modernize our manpower-intensive linear labor processes,” said Kari Bingen, undersecretary of defense for intelligence, U.S. Defense Department.
Intelligence experts at the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on Wednesday, September 4, offered that the hybrid cloud may be the digital holy grail for future intelligence operations. Disciplines ranging from international intelligence sharing to artificial intelligence, which are being counted on for effective operations, might not attain their true potential without it.
Better information exchange, improved analysis and innovative technologies to keep up with adversaries will be essential if the intelligence community is to serve U.S. national security interests effectively in the coming years, stated experts at the opening session of the AFCEA/INSA Intelligence & National Security Summit on Wednesday, September 4.
From the outer space environment of the moon to the virtual realm of cyberspace, technology challenges have the potential to vex the intelligence community. Many of the tools that the community is counting on to accomplish its future mission can be co-opted or adopted by adversaries well-schooled in basic scientific disciplines. So U.S. intelligence officials must move at warp speed to develop innovations that give them an advantage over adversaries while concurrently denying foes the use of the same innovations against the United States.
The U.S. Navy is working to keep pace with its land counterparts by providing the right information, software updates and new technical capabilities to its sailors at the right place and the right time. In the case of the sea service, the right place is often out at sea and under suboptimal conditions for satellite transmissions. The right time is every moment they need it.
The Office of the Director of National Intelligence issued a special notice on May 22 seeking input from companies on advancing technologies such as artificial intelligence, data management and advanced computing to aid the intelligence community and strengthen national security. The request for information ask interested parties to respond by July 26.
The agency, or ODNI, is broadening the range of its Intelligence, Science, and Technology Partnership, known as In-STeP, to provide input on innovative capabilities that address ODNI's Intelligence Community (IC)-wide Strategic Initiatives.
ODNI’s IC-wide Strategic Initiatives include:
The FBI has a full plate: fighting public corruption, organized and white-collar crime and domestic and foreign terrorism; solving violent crimes; protecting civil rights; neutralizing national security threats, espionage and counterintelligence; and mitigating threats of weapons of mass destruction, among other responsibilities. And one part of the bureau is growing to protect the nation against cyber threats.
A new strategy for U.S. intelligence looks to improve integration of counterintelligence and security efforts, increasingly address cyber threats, and have clear guidance of civil liberties, privacy and transparency. As outlined in the U.S. National Intelligence Strategy (NIS), from Director of National Intelligence (DNI) Dan Coats, the intelligence community is facing a turbulent and complex strategic environment, and as such, the community “must do things differently.”
Across-the-board innovation is increasing the national security threat picture, and the U.S. Defense Department is preparing to respond in kind. Technology advances such as hypersonics and artificial intelligence may join macroprojects such as a new space force as peer and near-peer adversaries gear up to overcome U.S. military superiority.
As billions more Internet of Things (IoT)-related devices come online, the barrage of cyber threats will not only continue but will target users in new ways. Moreover, the number of adversaries mounting attacks against the United States in cyberspace will continue to grow in the next year, as nation-states, terrorist groups, criminal organizations and others persist in the development of cyber warfare capabilities, Michael Moss, deputy director, Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center (CTIIC) warned during recent Congressional testimony.
The U.S. Army is poised to implement five force design changes related to the integration of multidomain capabilities, including intelligence, cyber and electronic warfare. The integration of such capabilities is designed to allow commanders to act more quickly on the cyber-era battlefield.
David May, senior intelligence advisor, U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence and Fort Gordon, Georgia, explained the changes while serving on a multidomain panel at the AFCEA TechNet Augusta conference.
Six3 Intelligence Solutions Inc./CACI, McLean, Virginia, was awarded a $125,807,584 modification (P00021) to contract W911W4-16-C-0006 for intelligence support services to the U.S. Forces-Afghanistan and Resolute Support director of intelligence. Work will be performed in Kabul, Afghanistan, with an estimated completion date of February 28, 2020. Fiscal year 2018 operations and maintenance Army funds in the amount of $23,577,527 were obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Warren, Michigan, is the contracting activity.
Cloud computing, big data and cyber are among the capabilities that pose a major threat to U.S. forces, said Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier, Army deputy chief of staff, G-2.
“If you’re a threat actor out there, probably a little bit of investment in these areas is going to go a long way to make life very difficult for your adversaries,” Gen. Berrier told the audience at the AFCEA Army Signal Conference in Springfield, Virginia.
The lines between nation-state and criminal cyber attacks are blurring, and the pace of their onslaughts is increasing geometrically as everyone from private citizens to secure government organizations is targeted. Most importantly, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to either cybersecurity or threat intelligence. Each aspect must be tailored to the threat and the threatened.
Many of these points were brought forward in an AFCEA classified cyber forum earlier this year. Addressing the theme of “Evolving Cyber Threat Intelligence, Means, Methods and Motives,” the forum generated some valuable unclassified observations and conclusions relevant to dealing with today’s cyberthreat.
The governments of Iran, North Korea, Russia and China are responsible for 90 percent of attacks on U.S. government agencies and private companies, said a leading cybersecurity expert at a recent conference. Most attacks come in the form of spear-phishing or email-related breaches.
With a little more financial backing, the U.S. Marine Corps is primed to grow its force in three critical areas to meet the threats of the future: cyber, electronic warfare (EW) and intelligence.
The nation’s expeditionary service is creating what Commandant Gen. Robert Neller, USMC, has called a Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) information group—a critical component that encompasses those three key warfare domains, Lt. Gen. Gary Thomas, USMC, deputy commandant for Programs and Resources, told members of the U.S. House Armed Services Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee.
The complexity of counterterrorism efforts and information sharing in the United States dwarfs the challenges besetting European governments as the continent contends with penetrable borders, an influx of refugees and the radicalization of some of its youth.
The rise in turmoil not only threatens the existence of the Schengen area, in which 26 countries abolished the need for passports to cross mutual borders, but complicates intelligence efforts to combat terror, said Michael Leiter, chief operations officer at Leidos, a panelist at the third annual Intelligence & National Security Summit (INSS) in Washington, D.C. this week.
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.
Maj. Gen. Kirk F. Vollmecke, USA, has been assigned as program executive officer, Intelligence, Electronic Warfare and Sensors, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.
Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, today announced the leaders of the Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center (CTIIC). Director Tonya Ugoretz will lead the center, with Maurice Bland as deputy and Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) Research Director Thomas Donahue as part of the team.
A year ago, President Obama directed Clapper to establish the CTIIC in a move to fuse intelligence collected from multiple agencies probing cyberthreats. The center serves to “connect the dots” regarding malicious foreign cyberthreats against the United States, according to an ODNI press release announcing the leaders.
Stopping insider threats has become a unifying cybersecurity mission, particularly in the defense and intelligence communities. And for good reason. While in the recent past, mention of the words insider threat conjured up the likeness of Edward Snowden, the reality is much scarier. More often than not, insider threats result from innocent people making simple mistakes rather than the common misconception of malicious employees or whistleblowers.
TechNet Augusta 2015
The SIGNAL Magazine Show Daily
Convergence was the buzzword du jour as leaders outlined major changes to sweep the U.S. Army in efforts to shore up cyber weaknesses following a year of high-profile breaches and hacks that stunned the Defense Department. It is part of a cultural change that will have several military disciplines working together and removing the divides that have kept the intelligence community from working closely with signal commands, electronic warfare, cyber and information operations.
Hackers behind cybersecurity attacks on the U.S. federal government through the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) pilfered personal information from a much more significant number of current and former employees than previously reported.
Thursday, investigators reported two breaches occurred, with data stolen from 21.5 million workers, far more than the 4 million officials originally disclosed in June.
Hackers managed to breach the computer systems of the OPM, stealing data including Social Security numbers, birth dates, home addresses, job assignments, performance reviews, insurance details and training certificates.
The White House this week announced that it is creating a federal agency to keep tabs on and counter cybersecurity threats against the United States. The Cyber Threat Intelligence Integration Center will be the clearinghouse for collaborative offensive and defensive work performed by the FBI, the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security.
Intelligence community leaders who strive for greater transparency are vexed by leaks that undermine secrecy concerns. Yet, news reporters complain of stifling government security and seek to establish their own transparency through news leaks by government officials.
The intelligence community is striving to determine how it can work with industry early, before requirements for capabilities are confirmed, to get out ahead of challenges. Leaders want to adopt technology in some of the first phases rather than at the end. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) is looking to standardize capabilities across the intelligence community, determining how its many members can collaborate.
Cyber is the prime concern of the intelligence community, Sean Kanuck, national intelligence officer for cyber issues, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, said today at the Global Identity Summit in Tampa. Not only is cyber an immense problem in itself, but it also pervades all other national security concerns, including biometrics.
Brig. Gen. John T. Rauch Jr., USAF, has been assigned as director of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance strategy, plans, doctrine and force development, Deputy Chief of Staff, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, Headquarters U.S. Air Force, Pentagon, Washington, D.C.
DRS ICAS LLC, Dayton, Ohio, has been awarded a not-to-exceed $85,200,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract to build and deliver up to 600 Air Force Tactical Receive System-Ruggedized Concord Intelligence Broadcast Receivers. The Air Combat Command Acquisition Management and Integration Center, Newport News, Virginia, is the contracting activity (FA8750-14-D-0001).
Alliant Techsystems Inc., Fort Worth, Texas, was awarded a maximum $15,167,984 firm-fixed-price undefinitized contract modification (P00039) to FA8106-10-C-0010 to continue contractor logistic support services for the Iraqi Air Force's Cessna 208s intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance caravan and the Cessna 208 armed caravan and for aircraft maintenance student training on both aircraft types without a break in service. Work will be performed at Joint Base Balad, Iraq, and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2014. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, is the contracting activity.
PTFS was recently awarded a five-year, multi-million dollar contract from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) GEOINT Research Center (GRC) for a program called ILS Next. ILS Next replaces NGA’s legacy Voyager library management system which has been in operation for more than a decade. PTFS is supplying its commercial-off-the-shelf ArchivalWare Digital Library System (DLS). PTFS will help replace the legacy Voyager bibliographic cataloging system with ArchivalWare DLS. The system enables ingest, cataloging, storage, discovery, conversion, repurposing, collection, and assessment of geospatial and other multi-intelligence content on all three NGA network domains.
New World Solutions Inc., Herndon, Va., was awarded a $35,748,885 cost-plus-fixed-fee, non-option-eligible, non-multi-year contract to provide the National Guard Intelligence Center with applied remote sensing image science support. The U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command (Charlottesville), Charlottesville, Va., is the contracting activity (W911W5-13-D-0001).
Government Secure Solutions CGI Inc., Manassas, Va., was awarded a $27,019,494 cost-plus-fixed-fee, non-option eligible, non-multi-year contract for services support of technology enhancements that are integrated into the intelligence enterprise for use in Afghanistan and world-wide. The U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command – Fort Belvoir, Va. is the contracting activity (W911W4-13-C-0009).
L3 National Security Solutions Inc., Reston, Va., was awarded a $23,934,919 cost-plus-fixed-fee, non-option eligible, non-multi-year contract for services and support to the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command Futures Directorate integration environment and enhancements to the intelligence enterprise. The U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command – Fort Belvoir, Va. is the contracting activity (W911W4-13-C-0008).