Cyber threat grows more destructive, crosses borders

| August 11, 2011 | 0 Comments

Karen Parrish
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON — The U.S. is facing an increasing cyber threat that is accessible to a wide range of enemies, according to Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn III.

The Department of Defense is working to defend its own networks and support the Department of Homeland Security’s mission to protect systems important to national security, Lynn said.

Individuals need to take personal responsibility about what they post.

“Most of what we see today is exploitation; that’s theft (and) stealing secrets, either commercial or military,” Lynn said. “We know the tools exist to destroy things, to destroy physical property, to destroy networks, to destroy data (and) maybe even take human lives.

“At some point, you’re going to see a marriage of capability and intent, and that is what we should truly worry about,” Lynn added.

Pentagon officials recently released DOD’s first strategy aimed at countering cyber threat. The DOD alone has 15,000 networks and more than seven million computing devices.

“We’re protecting those military capabilities,” Lynn said, “but we need to go further. Working through the Department of Homeland Security, we need to think about how we might use better defensive capabilities to protect the power grid, the transportation network (and) the financial sector.”

The DOD is not committing to protecting the entire Internet, Lynn said.

“We’re talking with our allies about how we have a collective defense,” he said. “We’re working with them to share technologies (and) to share understandings of the threat, so that we have a collective defense approach to this important problem.”

Defending the cyber domain requires a new way of thinking, Lynn said.

“It’s different than land, sea, air and space,” he noted. “It’s largely privately owned. It crosses borders. It doesn’t respect sovereignty, and the speed at which it moves, keystrokes on one side of the globe can have an impact on the other … in the blink of an eye.”

The DOD doesn’t monitor or scan commercial networks in the U.S., Lynn said.

“We’re trying to work with the appropriate agencies — the FBI, with law enforcement (and) the Department of Homeland Security — for protection of critical infrastructure to provide capabilities that the Defense Department has that might be used for those critical missions,” he said. “But we don’t have the primary role.”

Operational Security online tips 

•Do not post exact deployment dates or redeployment dates.

•Do not reveal deployment details like camp locations, including nearby cities, unless military officials have officially announced the information.

•Do not post detailed information on the mission, capabilities or morale of a unit.

•Do not share details concerning security procedures, response times and tactics.

•Don’t discuss equipment or lack thereof, to include training equipment.

•Don’t speculate about future operations.

•Don’t post anything that could be misconstrued or used for propaganda purposes.

•Avoid the use of count-up or count-down tickers to deployment or redeployment.

•Avoid images that show significant landmarks near a base of operations or black out last names and unit affiliations.

•Do not post information about casualties before the official release of information.

•Do not pass on rumors.

Contact your unit’s OPSEC manager with any questions.



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Category: Army News Service, News, Safety

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