Defense Department Faces Challenges in its Cyber Activities

Defense Department Faces Challenges in its Cyber Activities

DOD´s organization to address cybersecurity threats is decentralized and spread across various offices, commands, military services, and military agencies.
This is the analysis of the last GAO (U.S. Government Accountability Office) report.

DOD is taking proactive measures to better address cybersecurity threats, such as developing new organizational structures, led by the establishment of the U.S. Cyber Command, to facilitate the integration of cyberspace operations. However, it is too early to tell if these changes will help DOD better address cybersecurity threats.

The GAO´s reccommendations are:
- to strengthen DOD´s cyberspace doctrine and operations to better address cybersecurity threats, the Secretary of Defense should direct the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in consultation with the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and U.S. Strategic Command to establish a time frame for (1) deciding whether or not to proceed with a dedicated joint doctrine publication on cyberspace operations and for (2) updating the existing body of joint doctrine to include complete cyberspace-related definitions;

- to strengthen DOD´s cyberspace doctrine and operations to better address cybersecurity threats, the Secretary of Defense should direct the appropriate officials in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, in coordination with the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and the Joint Staff, to clarify DOD guidance on command and control relationships between U.S. Strategic Command, the services, and the geographic combatant commands regarding cyberspace operations, and establish a time frame for issuing the clarified guidance;

- to ensure that DOD takes a more comprehensive approach to its cyberspace capability needs and that capability gaps are prioritized and addressed, the Secretary of Defense should direct the appropriate Office of the Secretary of Defense officials, in coordination with the secretaries of the military departments and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to develop a comprehensive capabilities-based assessment of the departmentwide cyberspace-related mission and a time frame for its completion;

- to ensure that DOD takes a more comprehensive approach to its cyberspace capability needs and that capability gaps are prioritized and addressed, the Secretary of Defense should direct the appropriate Office of the Secretary of Defense officials, in coordination with the secretaries of the military departments and the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to develop an implementation plan and funding strategy for addressing any gaps resulting from the assessment that require new capability development or modifications to existing programs.

The full report is available here:
http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d1175.pdf

martedì 26 luglio 2011
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