Pentagon Will Expand Cyber Force by 4,000 to Counter Mounting Online Attacks

Wednesday, January 30, 2013
(graphic: AP)

Concerned over the growing number of online attacks, the Department of Defense has decided to greatly expand its cyber security force by 4,000 personnel over the next several years. Currently, the Pentagon’s Cyber Command has 900 employees.


Officials admitted that one significant challenge will be finding enough qualified individuals to bolster the force by the thousands.


The new cyber warriors will go to work under one of three types of missions: “national mission forces” will work to protect computer systems that support electrical grids, power plants and other key infrastructure for the nation’s economic and political security; “combat mission forces” will help military field commanders plan and execute attacks or other offensive operations overseas; and “cyber protection forces” will protect the Defense Department’s computer networks.


So far, the Pentagon’s cyber operation intersects with the work of the National Security Agency (NSA). In fact, both groups share the same director, Gen. Keith B. Alexander.


“Given the malicious actors that are out there and the development of the technology, in my mind, there’s little doubt that some adversary is going to attempt a significant cyber-attack on the United States at some point,” William J. Lynn III, a former deputy defense secretary who helped the Pentagon develop its cyber security strategy, told The Washington Post. “The only question is whether we’re going to take the necessary steps like this one to deflect the impact of the attack in advance or. . .read about the steps we should have taken in some post-attack commission report.”

-Noel Brinkerhoff


To Learn More:

Pentagon to Boost Cybersecurity Force (by Ellen Nakashima, Washington Post)

Pentagon Expanding Cybersecurity Force to Protect Networks Against Attacks

(by Elisabeth Bumiller, New York Times)

Pentagon Networks Threatened by Cyber Attack…The Dangers of Outsourcing Security (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)

Computer Spies Hack into Pentagon’s Costliest Weapons Program (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)

Pentagon Classifies Cyber-Attack as Act of War (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)

One if by Land, Two if by Sea and Three if by Cyberspace (by Noel Brinkerhoff and Ken Broder, AllGov)


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