Defense Department Pretty Much Incompetent In Dealing With Online Threats

from the but-of-course dept

Last year, we noted that there was something of an internal executive branch fight over who had the mandate to deal with so-called "cybersecurity" threats: the Defense Department (mainly the NSA) or Homeland Security. Neither group is ideal, obviously, but the Defense Department's claims were definitely much more ridiculous, in that it seemed like the entire point of asking for control over online security was to grant the NSA more spying powers. In fact, we found it somewhat hilarious that the DoD seemed to think that one of its best qualifications for managing digital security issues was its own incompetence in dealing with massive security breaches. Yes, the logic was basically "we had crappy security, so we know that online threats are real." Yeah.

Now, as a bunch of folks have been pointing out, the GAO has put out a brutal report, explaining just how incredibly incompetent the Pentagon has been in both understanding and dealing with any kind of online threats. The full report (pdf) is pretty direct in suggestion that the DoD has known about problems for ages, but has only just started addressing the problems -- and the report says it's too early to tell if they've had any real impact at all.

While we've long said that the risk of "cyberwar" is blown way out of proportion, that doesn't mean that there aren't many attempts to breach government digital security. Tragically, this report suggests that the DoD is woefully unprepared to deal with the issues, and is only just now trying to catch up (potentially from a position well behind any adversaries.).
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Filed Under: cybersecurity, defense department, nsa


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  1. icon
    PaulT (profile), 1 Aug 2011 @ 4:42am

    Re: Bullshytt

    So, you're saying that the GAO is lying?

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