The Missing ‘D’ in Defending the Nation: Disruption

USNI Blog – The end of the Soviet Union; September 11th; Russian occupation of Crimea; and the emergence of a more aggressive China have dramatically changed the national security and defense equations. Concurrently and invisibly, however, another overarching threat emerged. This threat is one of “massive attacks of disruption,” whether by man or nature. And the shorthand also is MAD. 

Can’t Sail Away From Cyber Attacks: ‘Sea-Hacking’ From Land

War on the Rocks – The warnings had been issued for years. The techniques were simple enough — penetrate the platform through the onboard navigation system and then go horizontally across the onboard networks to gain control of key systems such as steering and the throttle. The hackers did exactly this — surprisingly without foreknowledge of the specific systems they were to hack prior to beginning the penetration. They were in and through the navigation interface in a remarkably short time and had control of both the steering systems and the throttle in quick succession. From this effort came a coveted “Black Badge” from the Maritime Hacking village of the annual cyber security conference DefCon, held in August 2021 in Las Vegas.

If You Build It, They Will Lose: Competing With China Requires New Information Warfare Tools

CIMSEC – Great Power Competition will dominate our military’s focus for the foreseeable future and the Information Warfare Community, including Naval Intelligence, must adjust accordingly. Understanding that China intends to enhance its military modernization efforts with AI, that it thinks differently about warfare in the 21stcentury, and that we need to modify our own warfare model to effectively respond, the Information Warfare Community’s newfound status should elevate new technologies into our Navy’s decision-making and combat DNA.

Tackling Maritime Cyber Threats: A Call For Cross-Stakeholder Cooperation

CIMSEC – Earning serious proficiency in offensive and defensive cyber capabilities will become fundamental. Especially in the maritime domain, with its vast interdependencies, cyber threats must be faced cooperatively to ensure a resilient and reliable cyberspace, which has become indispensable for the functioning of the global maritime commons.

Sea Blind: Pacing Cybersecurity’s Evolving Impact on Maritime Operations

CIMSEC – Just as the sextant enabled celestial navigation of ships far from shore, and signal flags and lights allowed ships to communicate with one another more effectively, the adoption of digital technology has allowed sailors to shoot, move, and communicate even more rapidly. While this technology allows seafarers to navigate more precisely and communicate and coordinate with others more easily, it introduces new vulnerabilities to modern warships.

Sieges, Containerships, and Ecosystems: Rethinking Maritime Cybersecurity

CIMSEC – The underpinnings of the global economy rely not on centralized control of a benevolent organization, but on the collective efforts of the global maritime ecosystem to take the necessary actions to ensure that the maritime commons remain credible and viable to transport the world’s goods. But the maritime industry must acknowledge that they are already under siege and act accordingly. 

AI Will Change War, But Not in the Way You Thing

War on the Rocks – AI is sure to permeate every aspect of warfighting — from movement to communication, logistics, intelligence, weapons, and people. Delivering these warfare-changing technologies to the frontlines and into American hands will depend on less glamorous activities — namely, expediting the procurement process to more quickly field AI, and securing supply chains by collaborating with U.S. companies.

The Future of Information Combat Power: Winning the Information War

CIMSEC – In a data-rich and knowledge-poor circumstance, challenged with sophisticated competitors, as IWC you will be more than just the conductor of this information orchestra; you will be the instrument builder and tuner, the composer, and the producer. You will rely on advanced technologies and computers to perform the heavy lifting so our forces can act dynamically with precision and purpose. Modern information warfare requires this nimble shift from orchestra to jazz, or to the raw power and disruption of punk rock.

Cyberphysical Forensics: Lessons From the USS John S. McCain Collision

CIMSEC – The 2017 back-to-back collisions of two Navy destroyers led to much speculation about the role of cyberphysical interference in the disasters. As the senior officer representing the U.S. Navy engineering community during the USS McCain cyber assessment, it is clear that we do not yet have the basic tools to definitively answer the question, “were we hacked or did we break it?”