Over the weekend, Adm. Mike McConnell, former DNI and presently heading the cyber effort at Booz Allen, published an article in The Washington Post calling for a new strategy and thought process for cybersecurity in the United States. The article highlighted a number of key strategies McConnell believes the nation should look to actions, including reverse engineering the Internet and employing both deterrence and preemption capabilities.
The New New Internet had the opportunity to ask two cybersecurity experts, with years of government service, their reactions to McConnell’s suggestions. Retired Air Force Gen. Dale Meyerrose is the current vice president and general manager for Cyberspace Solutions at Harris Corporation and previously worked under McConnell. Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Harry Raduege is the chairman of the Deloitte Center for Cyber Innovation, a senior counselor with the Cohen Group and is the former director of DISA.
Gen. Dale Meyerrose:
“I think Adm. McConnell is exactly right in that if you have many of the assets in private ownership and most of the capability to do something about it in the public sector, figuring out how to get those two things to work properly is going to be the key. [Cyber] is a completely man-made domain, of which we don’t seem to have or want to have a lot of control over. Whereas the physical domains of air, land, sea and space, we have a lot easier time of dealing with than the man-made one. I think Adm. McConnell is spot on. We need to figure out how to think of these things differently than we have in the past. He is a thought leader in this area, a former boss of mine, and I think he understands this area as well as anyone around and his call for action is very appropriate.”
Lt. Gen. Harry Raduege:
“Many of the developed nations of the world are as dependent on a healthy, secure Internet as we are, so this is a multidimensional, global problem. Just as we had a triad of land, sea and airborne nuclear capabilities to deter the use of weapons of mass destruction during the Cold War, we need a cyber-triad today to deter weapons of mass disruption. We need continuing resilience throughout our network infrastructure, so that our adversaries know that they cannot cripple our national security or economy with a cyber attack. We must solve the attribution problem, because if we don’t know who is attacking us then we cannot impose measured consequences to deter or counter them. And, we must develop offensive cyber capabilities. Our enemies have to know that we can cripple their critical networks if they threaten ours. If we set up this cyber-triad, our country’s national security and economic stability will be better protected.”