New chief key to "Defense in Depth"
- By Bill Murray
- Jan 23, 2001
Several challenges await a former National Security Agency cryptologist
who recently became the armed forces' information assurance director.
Robert Lentz last month replaced Dick Schaeffer, who returned to work
at NSA, said Susan Hansen, a Pentagon spokeswoman. Lentz now works for Jeffrey
Gaynor, the acting principal director for the deputy assistant secretary
of Defense for security and information operations.
Because DOD officials claim that rogue states with highly-trained hackers
who can take down power grids pose a viable threat, officials such as Lentz
and Gaynor are important to national security strategy.
Lentz is the Office of the Secretary of Defense representative to national
information assurance forums, and he also handles critical infrastructure
protection oversight and OSD's coordination with the national defense infrastructure.
He's a key player in the armed service's implementation of its "Defense
in Depth" strategy, which calls for multiple layers of defenses to guard
Defense Department networks and electronic transmissions.
Three major programs are under Lentz's watch:
Information assurance and PKI are strongly connected in DOD. Armed services
officials view PKI as their chief means to ensure that senders of electronic
messages are who they say they are and that messages are transmitted and
received without being tampered.
The biometrics management office has a difficult task in trying to translate
cutting-edge technologysuch as sensors that can do retina scans for tactical
network identificationinto practical systems deployable under reasonable
During his 25-year NSA career, Lentz has held the chief financial officer
position at the NSA Information Assurance Directorate, among other posts.