DoD's New Cyber Strategy

William Lynn

The Pentagon has a new cyber strategy, outlined by Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn III in the September/October edition of Foreign Affairs.

“Although cyberspace is a man-made domain, it has become just as critical to military operations as land, sea, air and space,” Lynn writes. “As such, the military must be able to defense and operate within it.”

To facilitate DoD’s operations in cyberspace, the department has set up a new organizational structure in U.S. Cyber Command, headed by NSA director Gen. Keith Alexander. The command will provide security for military operations in cyberspace, provide a way to marshal attack capabilities, and provide aid to civilian agencies and the Intelligence Community.

“Given the dominance of offense in cyberspace, U.S. defenses need to be dynamic,” Lynn writes. “Milliseconds can make a difference, so the U.S. military must respond to attacks as they happen or even before they arrive. To grapple with this, the Pentagon has deployed a system that includes three overlapping lines of defense.”

The United States must also be able to respond to intruders who have managed to breach the network as well.

“This requires being able to hunt within the military’s own networks,” Lynn writes, “a task that is also part of the Pentagon’s active defense capability.”

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