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Pentagon Reveals New Cyber Strategy

Friday, July 15, 2011 | 12:05 PM Leave a comment Go to comments

The Pentagon on Thursday unveiled its much-anticipated plans for how it intends to move forward with military, intelligence and business operations in the ever-evolving realm of cyberspace.

Releasing its unclassified report, “Department of Defense Strategy for Operating in Cyberspace,” the Pentagon offered up of five key strategies it intends to focus on in order to crack down on cyber vulnerabilities, risks and threats posed on the US and its systems.

“It is critical to strengthen our cyber capabilities to address the cyber threats we’re facing,” said Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta in a statement.  “I view this as an area in which we’re going to confront increasing threats in the future and think we have to be better prepared to deal with the growing cyber challenges that will face the nation.”

The five strategic initiatives detailed by the Department of Defense (DoD) include:

  1. DoD will treat cyberspace as an operational domain to organize, train, and equip so that DoD can take full advantage of cyberspace’s potential.
  2. DoD will employ new defense operating concepts to protect DoD networks and systems.
  3. DoD will partner with other U.S. government departments and agencies and the private sector to enable a whole-of-government cybersecurity strategy.
  4. DoD will build robust relationships with U.S. allies and international partners to strengthen collective cybersecurity.
  5. DoD will leverage the nation’s ingenuity through an exceptional cyber workforce and rapid technological innovation.

“The Department’s five strategic initiatives offer a roadmap for DoD to operate effectively in cyberspace, defend national interests, and achieve national security objectives,” the report concluded.

“By pursuing the activities in this strategy, DoD will capitalize on the opportunities afforded to the Department by cyberspace; defend DoD networks and systems against intrusions and malicious activity; support efforts to strengthen cybersecurity for interagency, international, and critical industry partners; and develop robust cyberspace capabilities and partnerships.”

Supporting the new cyber strategy, Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III addressed his colleagues at the National Defense University in Washington Thursday, noting: “Our responsibility is to acknowledge this new environment and adapt our security instruments to it.  That is the purpose of the DoD Cyber Strategy.”

“We must prepare.  We must recognize the interconnectedness of cyber.  And we must be mindful of the many ways cyberspace is used–as a peaceful instrument of global communications, as a tool for economic growth–and, also, as an instrument to threaten and sometimes cause harm,” Lynn added.

“Given this broad landscape of activity in cyberspace, we must both protect its peaceful, shared uses as well as prepare for hostile cyber acts that threaten our national security.   The strategy we are announcing today helps establish that balance.  It provides a framework for us to promote our nation’s values in this vital civilian space while carrying out our duty to protect the nation.”

And if you’re not already off plotting and planning your on cyber strategies, check out the following hacking headlines you may have missed:

Internet bill could help hackers, experts warn (National Journal)

McCain calls for special cybersecurity panel (AFP)

Lieberman, Collins, Carper seek ‘gold standard’ in cybersecurity (National Journal)

NSA shares cyber tools with defense contractors (Defense Systems)

US Military expanding arsenal of cyber warfare capabilities (eWeek)

Cost of Cybersecurity Enhancement Act estimated at $1B (GovInfoSecurity)

White House agrees to let Congress codify some cybersecurity policies (NextGov)

House creates GOP-only cybersec task force (GovInfoSecurity)

Cloud trust improves among government IT pros (InformationWeek)

DOD proposes new cybersecurity requirements for contractors (Federal Computer Week)

Cybersecurity experts warn of common software error (Washington Times)

Cyber attacks grow more severe, frequent, say IT practitioners (Infosecurity)

Cybersecurity by the numbers: How bad is it? (ZDNet)


US, Russia forge cybersecurity pact (InformationWeek)

Iran ready to counter US cyber attack (PressTV)

Al Qaeda web forum hacked, but why? (CBS News)

South Korea gears up for cyber warfare (OfficialWire)

Is the inter-Korean conflict going cyber? (Al Jazeera)

Hackers target Brazil government sites (Wall Street Journal)

Germans fear cyber-crime as digital blackmail grows (Reuters)

Dutch government unprepared for cyber attack (Dutch News)


Pentagon lost 24,000 computer files in March cyber attack (Bloomberg)

Hackers claim they exposed Booz Allen Hamilton data (CNET)

Hacker group Anonymous  attacks Apple (Computer Weekly)

LulzSec passes hacking torch to Anonymous (CRN)

DOE lab shuts down web access after sophisticated cyber attack (eWeek)

Washington Post hack compromises 1.27 million job seeker accounts (CRN)

Fending off cyber attacks (Wall Street Journal)

Secret Service to probe Fox News cyber attack (CBC)

NATO: Alliance’s website possibly breached (MSNBC)

Cyber attack on Gannett targets US soldiers (Reuters)

IMF says identified files copied in cyber attack (Reuters)

New round of cyber attacks heightens focus on FBI (Reuters)

Former YouSendIt CEO pleads guilty to cyber attack (BizJournals)


NSA denies partnership with Google (Courthouse News Service)

Sony backs US cybersecurity legislation (AFP)

Lockheed promises electric grid security (Bloomberg)


Defense Sec. Lynn: Cyber strategy’s thrust is defensive (Defense.gov)

Former CIA Chief: Separate Internet could curb cyber threats (Popular Science)

Dem: Cybersecurity is not a partisan issue (Politico)

Chertoff: ‘Rules and regulations’ complicate anti-cybercrime efforts (Wall Street Journal)

Senator: New cybersecurity regulations needed for banks (PCWorld)

Obama cybersecurity proposal flawed, but fixable (Heritage)

Video: Ohanian says companies must `step up’ on cyber defense (Washington Post)

Cyber challenge: Securing private-sector IT with a minimum of regulation (GCN)


Calling for comments on Cybersecurity, Innovations and the Internet Economy report (NIST.gov)

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