Todd Probert, vice president of mission support and modernization at Raytheon, has said the U.S. military has been collaborating with industry to safeguard its systems from cyber threats and understand the risks posed by vulnerabilities, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.
The military and Congress “must also increase funding specifically for cyber vulnerability assessments and cyber hardening,“ Probert noted.
His remarks are in response to a Government Accountability Office report, which uncovered several challenges facing the Defense Department when it comes to safeguarding weapons systems from cyber attacks.
Those challenges include the weapons' dependence on software and networked systems; DoD's failure to prioritize the cybersecurity of weapons platforms in the past decades; and the Pentagon's “nascent understanding“ when it comes to protecting weapons from cyber threats.
“Using relatively simple tools and techniques, testers were able to take control of systems and largely operate undetected, due in part to basic issues such as poor password management and unencrypted communications,“ GAO wrote in the report published Tuesday.
GAO noted that DoD has initiated programs to address vulnerabilities and issued new guidance and policies to build up the cybersecurity of its weapons systems but faces data sharing and workforce challenges that could hamper such efforts.