Intercepts

Norfolk, Va.—NEW DASN C4I NEEDED. Dr. Anne Miller resigned earlier this month as deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for C4I, a move that was somewhat of a "surprise," according to Navy CIO Dan Porter, speaking here at the Navy Connecting Technology Conference. Miller, who has taken an information technology position at the University of Missouri, was not supposed to leave until the summer, according to Porter. Miller's deputy, Capt. John O'Connell, has retired, but he has been replaced by Capt. John Higbee, who comes from a torpedo PM job. Higbee will serve as acting DASN C4I until the Navy finds a replacement for Miller—a task made somewhat easier by the fact that a DASN does not need a Senate nomination or confirmation.

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PLAIN-SPEAKING. Miller briefly served as the Navy CIO, replacing Marv Langston, who quickly pinged over to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and then ponged back to the Office of the Secretary of Defense. This led Porter to announce in his opening remarks to the conference that he has already served seven months in his job—"a record for a Navy CIO." In response to questions from the audience about plans and funding for the Navy Worldwide Intranet, Porter replied that the decision really is up to the major commands, adding that in his view people like him "are policy-setting dilettantes." Asked by the Interceptor about rumors that the CIO staff has put roadblocks in the way of the NWI, Porter replied that he hears and reads "a lot of hooey," including some generated by journalists. I could really warm to this man.

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SPACECOM BASHING. My mailbox has filled up with mostly negative comments about Pentagon plans to have the U.S. Space Command—home of the exploding rockets—take over the cyberdefense job from the Joint Task Force for Computer Network Defense. One e-mail from a former Spacecom network administrator called network management at the command's headquarters in Colorado "eccentric" at best, considering Spacecom's oddball choices of firewalls and network topology.

Two other e-mail correspondents foresee Spacecom gobbling up other key IT missions, possibly absorbing the Air Intelligence Agency from the Air Force and angling for control of DOD-wide offensive information operations. Sounds like space is the place to advance a cybercareer.

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