Not a “Pure Fight”

The Air Force’s chief information officer, Lt. Gen. Michael Peterson, believes, “There’s too much fighting about cyber—how big it is, who owns it.” So he told an Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association symposium in the Washington, D.C. area last week, reports In this he includes the entire federal apparatus, which he said is still arguing “over what patch to put on” rather than the broader protection of information security across the government. Peterson, who said that he was scheduled to brief President-elect Obama’s transition team that same day, asserted, “Good security practices are not just good security practices; they’re required security practices.” He doesn’t believe there will be a cyberwar-only scenario; rather he said that adversaries will use cyber attacks as one of many combat strategies. (The Pentagon recently briefed the President on a new attack that has raised the concern level.) In his words: “It won’t be a pure fight. It will incorporate all domains.” However, he added, “The battle is ongoing and these guys are very good.”