In an interview for the June issue of SIGNAL Magazine, General Keith Alexander, director of the NSA and commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, says he wanted to combine forces from various military and intelligence communities in order to take on the cyber threats facing the nation.
The article is a lead-up to General Alexander’s keynote at the AFCEA International Cyber Symposium in Baltimore later this month.
His plans call for consolidation of the signal community, as well as the signals intelligence and cyber communities. His reasoning is practical, given that they all operate within the same space, why not train them all together and operate as a complete unit.
Speaking to the magazine, General Alexander commented, “the country didn’t bring [Cyber Command] here to defend ourselves; they brought us here to defend the country.”
With the digitization of information management (networking, communications and data storage), previously disparate disciplines assumed greater commonality; now with more common aspects, these disciplines share similar vulnerabilities as well as potential solutions.
Unfortunately, the General says, the structure of the cyberforce has not kept pace with these technology developments.
“Cyberspace is becoming an active area in which nations will attack us,” he adds. “We are going to have to defend the nation in this area—that is our role.”
The biggest challenge facing this convergence approach will be changing the existing military culture, he said.
The full article is worth a read, and is available online.