Risk

11/4/2010
12:48 PM
50%
50%

U.S. Cyber Command Opens Doors

The military command in charge of defending Department of Defense networks against cyber attacks is fully operational, about a month later than expected.

Inside DHS' Classified Cyber-Coordination Headquarters
(click image for larger view)
Slideshow: Inside DHS' Classified Cyber-Coordination Headquarters

A month later than expected, the military command in charge of the U.S. effort against cyber warfare has achieved full operational capability, according to the Department of Defense (DoD).

The U.S. Cyber Command, led by Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander, is meant to protect DoD networks against cyber attacks and is in charge of all federal cyber-warfare activities. It's based in Ft. Meade, Md., where the National Security Agency (NSA) -- which Alexander also directs -- is also headquartered.

To become fully operational required the command to achieve some "critical tasks," according to the DoD. They included establishing a joint operations center and merging hundreds of personnel and duties from two existing organizations -- the Joint Task Force for Global Network Operations and the Joint Functional Component Command for Network Warfare.

Now that the Cyber Command is fully up and running, the DoD plans to expand it by adding workforce, agency support, and capabilities as its mission and needs evolve, according to the DoD.

Under Alexander's lead, the Cyber Command will work closely with the NSA and other agencies -- including the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) -- on cyber warfare activities.

Last month the DoD and DHS signed a pact to collaborate more closely on cyber-related issues in an effort to formally merge civilian and military cybersecurity efforts. Previously, the two agencies worked together more on a case-by-case basis without specific structure.

Alexander has publicly spoken numerous times about the threat to DoD networks from cyber attacks. At the Gov 2.0 Summit in Washington in September, he said there are 250,000 probes trying to find their way into DoD networks every hour, and cyber attacks on federal agencies have increased 150% since 2008.

Despite this rhetoric, a recent report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission conflicts with the threat Alexander and other U.S. officials have presented. According to published reports, the commission found that malicious cyber activity is actually on the decline in 2010, with 30,000 incidents in the first half of the year compared to 71,000 in the same time period last year.

Even if the threat is waning, preparing the U.S. military for cyber warfare remains a priority for the Obama administration, and the U.S. Cyber Command is its first line of defense.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
Dark Reading Live EVENTS
INsecurity - For the Defenders of Enterprise Security
A Dark Reading Conference
While red team conferences focus primarily on new vulnerabilities and security researchers, INsecurity puts security execution, protection, and operations center stage. The primary speakers will be CISOs and leaders in security defense; the blue team will be the focus.
White Papers
Video
Cartoon Contest
Write a Caption, Win a Starbucks Card! Click Here
Latest Comment: No, no, no! Have a Unix CRON do the pop-up reminders!
Current Issue
Security Vulnerabilities: The Next Wave
Just when you thought it was safe, researchers have unveiled a new round of IT security flaws. Is your enterprise ready?
Flash Poll
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
[Strategic Security Report] How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Problem
Enterprises are spending more of their IT budgets on cybersecurity technology. How do your organization's security plans and strategies compare to what others are doing? Here's an in-depth look.
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
CVE-2017-0290
Published: 2017-05-09
NScript in mpengine in Microsoft Malware Protection Engine with Engine Version before 1.1.13704.0, as used in Windows Defender and other products, allows remote attackers to execute arbitrary code or cause a denial of service (type confusion and application crash) via crafted JavaScript code within ...

CVE-2016-10369
Published: 2017-05-08
unixsocket.c in lxterminal through 0.3.0 insecurely uses /tmp for a socket file, allowing a local user to cause a denial of service (preventing terminal launch), or possibly have other impact (bypassing terminal access control).

CVE-2016-8202
Published: 2017-05-08
A privilege escalation vulnerability in Brocade Fibre Channel SAN products running Brocade Fabric OS (FOS) releases earlier than v7.4.1d and v8.0.1b could allow an authenticated attacker to elevate the privileges of user accounts accessing the system via command line interface. With affected version...

CVE-2016-8209
Published: 2017-05-08
Improper checks for unusual or exceptional conditions in Brocade NetIron 05.8.00 and later releases up to and including 06.1.00, when the Management Module is continuously scanned on port 22, may allow attackers to cause a denial of service (crash and reload) of the management module.

CVE-2017-0890
Published: 2017-05-08
Nextcloud Server before 11.0.3 is vulnerable to an inadequate escaping leading to a XSS vulnerability in the search module. To be exploitable a user has to write or paste malicious content into the search dialogue.