Submarine launched cruise missile

WASHINGTON: Two years ago, Capt. John Zimmerman and his award-winning Navy team were testing a software upgrade for submarines when they ran into a surprising problem. When they changed the code controlling the Tomahawk missile launchers, the torpedo tubes stopped working. Fortunately, this all happened in a laboratory ashore before the upgrade got anywhere near the… Keep reading →

US Army cybersecurity personnel

ARLINGTON: “We needed to learn to speak infantry,” said Col. William Hartman, commander of the Army’s first offensive cyber operations brigade. That’s not easy. When one of Hartman’s teams joined a brigade of the 25th Infantry Division for an exercise this spring, the colonel recounted, the 25th’s commanding general told Hartman that his cyber operators… Keep reading →


When Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work unveiled what we are now, unfortunately, calling the JICSPOC, there were many many questions and few answers. Among the most important questions was: if spy and military satellites are being flown and monitored from the same place and a satellite appears to be under attack, who will command — the Intelligence… Keep reading →

James Clapper

WASHINGTON: No one really knows what they’re doing in cyberspace: It’s all too new and it changes too fast. So it was refreshing — if unnerving — for two top intelligence officials to admit this morning that the US government’s lack of clarity makes it more difficult both to deter adversaries’ cyber operations and to conduct… Keep reading →

CRS-7 launch

UPDATED: SMC Clarifies That Certification Is Not Indefinite. PENTAGON: Word from the Air Force is that SpaceX “remains certified” to launch the nation’s most expensive and heaviest intelligence and Air Force satellites. It took a few days, which is not surprising how politically and legally sensitive everything involving Elon Musk and SpaceX national security launch certification… Keep reading →

Adm. Mike Rogers

GEOINT: NSA Director Adm. Mike Rogers pointedly declined today to confirm whether China was behind the massive Office of Personnel Management hacks. “So what really makes you think that, as the head of NSA and Cyber Com, I’m going to talk with you about this,” he told a reporter here today. Breaking D readers can… Keep reading →

Guardrail tactical SIGINT plane

WASHINGTON: Imagine reconnaissance teams operating in enemy territory being able to hump in their own tiny  signals intelligence (SIGINT) sensors, able to gather intel on both electronic emissions (ELINT) and communications (COMINT). Ok, they don’t have to hump them in because each one weighs roughly two-and-half pounds. Sound like science fiction? Well, DRS, the American… Keep reading →


WASHINGTON: Apple, Amazon, and Google long since outstripped the Pentagon in information technology. But as the military and intelligence community try to take advantage of commercial IT innovation, especially in cloud computing, they have run into harsh limits. Security, long-range bandwidth and the sheer volume of data have created problems for the Pentagon that current commercially… Keep reading →


WASHINGTON: The deputy director of the National Security Agency said today that the Intelligence Community should declassify the existence of more cyber attacks to improve the agency’s ability to mobilize the private sector and to get help when needed. I asked Richard Ledgett at the end of a session at the Intelligence and National Security Summit… Keep reading →

Fort Meade

FORT MEADE, MD: “Remember the peace dividend we took in the Clinton years in the ’90s? Welcome back,” said Douglas Packard. “That’s where we’re at.” Some 20 years ago as defense budgets plummeted post-Cold War, the defense industry consolidated, recalled Packard, acting head of procurement at the Defense Information Systems Agency. Contractors better beware once more,… Keep reading →

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