DOD organizes network command

The nation's top cyberwarrior announced today that officials formed a new command structure to better operate and protect the military's computer networks.

"It's commanders working with commanders," said Air Force Lt. Gen. Harry Raduege, commander of the task force. He spoke today at a luncheon sponsored by the Northern Virginia chapter of AFCEA International.

Defense Department officials approved Nov. 19 the Global Information Grid Network Operations and Defense plan that identifies four officials in the military services that will report to the commander of the Joint Task Force-Global Network Operations.

The military services' commanders who will work with Raduege to achieve a better structure and discipline for operation and protection of the military's networks include Army Lt. Gen. Larry Dodgen, commanding general of Army Space and Missile Defense Command; Air Force Lt. Gen. Bruce Carlson, the service's component commander to Strategic Command; Navy Vice Adm. James McArthur Jr., commander of Naval Network Warfare Command; and Marine Corps Col. Robert Baker, the Marines' chief information officer.

DOD Secretary Donald Rumsfeld created the task force in June and named the director of the Defense Information Systems Agency to oversee it to achieve a more cohesive operation and protection of the military's networks. Raduege started serving as the agency's director in 2000 and agreed to serve for two more years in that post in 2003.

Raduege needed a command structure to better operate and protect the military's networks because they increasingly come under attack. He said task force officials reported 62,810 attempted intrusions to date this year, up from 54,488 in 2003.

Raduege also revealed that military networks were hacked 294 times in 2003. He said military employees could prevent 90 percent of the attacks if they practice better computer security to include using unique passwords and heed advice from the military's information assurance bulletins.

The task force falls under Strategic Command, one of the military's nine unified combatant commands that either oversee use of combat forces in a geographic region or provide a capability and develop doctrine for them. Strategic Command oversees the operation and protection of the military's networks and information operations to include psychological operations and perhaps computer network attack.

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