The United States has a great opportunity to start something that will transform national security – a consolidated cyber security effort. The concept of cyber security is not new as problem, however the solution is only now forming its bureaucratic boundaries. The government should – really must act before those boundaries solidify and become nearly impossible to breach (think Director of National Security). Although the governments’ intelligence effort has made some progress under the DNI, it is certainly slow, painful, fraught with angst, bureaucratic inertia and has left few broken rice bowls in its wake.
In his State of the Union, the President mentioned that several nations are not waiting to improve their economies; they are also not waiting until we have better cyber defenses. The Chinese are certainly not waiting and their cyber effort is likely not a decentralized one. We must consolidate cyber security, it is imperative that resources be utilized by just one agency, that expertise is resident in that agency and that it is a military-civilian, law enforcement and intelligence effort. Professional computer experts (including hackers) side by side with the experts to help guide their cyberspace efforts – intelligence, military and law enforcement professionals.
DOD will be the loudest voice against such an effort, history proves they like stand-alone capability. It is not the time for posturing or making an argument for going it alone. DOD can make a great argument for the needs of combatant commanders, and the like, but there is an overarching need to coordinate the nation’s cyber security. Every agency has such needs and properly organized, a National Cyber Security Agency can care for those needs.
This change can only come from the top and the appointment of a cyber czar is not the way to go, it is simply recognition of the problem. Recent news shows the need for the ability to glide easily around cyber space to find all manner of illegal and threatening events. The recent example of North Korean arms shipments is germane here. Cyber security must be proactive to have the desired effect, not reactive. It is time to get ahead of the bad guys. It is time to have a national and not an agency capability.
North Korean Arms Shipment
Navy Cyber Command Stand Up
Chinese Cyber Warfare
Note: The Epoch Times is a publication of the anti-PRC group Falun Gong. It maintains a considerable bias in some reporting, and there are accusations of occasional exaggeration or fabrication. This article however, has a reliable source as its base and is therefore used here.