Getting Cyber Out in the Open

The US military has made great strides in understanding and adapting to operating in cyberspace. But there is a pressing need to de-mystify the world of hackers and the “network,” and build up public-private partnerships to drive innovation and expertise, said Linton Wells, director of National Defense University’s Center for Technology and National Security Policy, Tuesday. Most research and development in the cyber world takes place outside of the Pentagon, stated Wells in an address in Arlington Va., sponsored by AFA’s Mitchell Institute for Airpower Studies. The private sector is increasingly going to be more in tune with information security as intellectual property theft becomes a bigger problem, he said. Network science, strategic communications, trends, and “memes” are all areas where the Defense Department is doing some very advanced work, and private industry is a key part of understanding and adapting to the challenges with these fields, he noted. While the military must still understand its role as a caretaker of the military segment of the cyber spectrum, there must be further partnerships between the private and public sectors if DOD is to build an effective, adaptable cyber culture in its workforce, said Wells.