Air Force seeks input on defending cyberspace

Air Force officials want input on how to better defend cyberspace and ensure that Defense Department networks remain constantly available.

Air Force officials issued a pre-solicitation Oct. 14 for white papers on defending cyberspace . Officials are looking for ways to anticipate and avoid threats through understanding the cyber situation, predicting adversarial actions and assessing potential effects.

The white paper request is for the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Focused Long Term Challenge Integrated Cyber Defense attribute.

Officials also want to be able to detect and defeat threats and protect information systems with defensive mechanisms such as adversary denial and deception.

They also want information on how to maintain, organize and automatically regenerate resources to ensure continued mission operations.

One of the specific areas officials are interested in learning about is how to make most threats irrelevant by eliminating vulnerabilities. Service officials want to eliminate vulnerabilities by either moving them “out of band” -- making them technically or physically inaccessible to an adversary -- or “designing them out” completely through systematic design practices.

“Defensive operations are constantly playing ‘catch up’ to an ever-increasing onslaught of attacks that seem to always stay one step ahead,” the request states. “In order to tip the balance in favor of the defender, we must develop a strategic approach to cyber defense that transcends the day-to-day reactive operations and provides the means to conduct defense in a proactive, goal-oriented fashion using systems that are robust and can be trusted to support the mission.”

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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