Info assurance should include sharing, general says

HONOLULU — The Defense Department is focusing its information assurance efforts too much on protection and not enough on sharing and availability, according to a senior official at U.S. Pacific Command.

Speaking this week at the AFCEA Asia-Pacific 2003 conference, Air Force Lt. Gen. Robert Dierker, deputy commander of PACOM, said the term information assurance usually conjures images of information security or protection. But just as important, he said, is equal emphasis on information distribution and sharing.

"One big dilemma we face every day is, how do we share information with our allies, coalition partners and other agency partners while protecting it from our adversaries?" Dierker said. "Our failure to share information is almost as problematic as the consequences of our adversaries' interception of it."

A much better balance needs to be achieved, Dierker said. The term assurance should mean that users "have great confidence in the information that it is accurate, secure and accessible by those who need it to support the mission, while still being protected from disclosure to our enemies," he said.

Networks need to be fluid and able to adapt to rapid changes that accompany operations worldwide, he said. There are many cases where some allies and adversaries end up swapping roles, depending on what the collaboration context is, he said.

"For example, a humanitarian assistance partner could very well turn out to be a security assistance adversary," Dierker said. "Sometimes, even among strong allies, we have information-sharing challenges. And for that matter, sometimes even among our own services as well."

DOD officials have been working on an official information assurance policy document for about seven months, and want to have a more substantive plan prepared by next October.

Featured

  • Contracting
    8 prototypes of the border walls as tweeted by CBP San Diego

    DHS contractors face protests – on the streets

    Tech companies are facing protests internally from workers and externally from activists about doing for government amid controversial policies like "zero tolerance" for illegal immigration.

  • Workforce
    By Mark Van Scyoc Royalty-free stock photo ID: 285175268

    At OPM, Weichert pushes direct hire, pay agent changes

    Margaret Weichert, now acting director of the Office of Personnel Management, is clearing agencies to make direct hires in IT, cyber and other tech fields and is changing pay for specialized occupations.

  • Cloud
    Shutterstock ID ID: 222190471 By wk1003mike

    IBM protests JEDI cloud deal

    As the deadline to submit bids on the Pentagon's $10 billion, 10-year warfighter cloud deal draws near, IBM announced a legal protest.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.