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Tighe takes over naval intel, info warfare

Vice Admiral Jan Tighe. Photo courtesy: U.S. Navy

Vice Adm. Jan Tighe

The Navy has a new top spy and cyber official.

Vice Adm. Jan Tighe has moved into the post of Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Information Warfare and Director of Naval Intelligence. The post taps Tighe's experience as one of the Navy's senior-most cyberwarriors. She's served as commander, U.S. Fleet Cyber Command and U.S. Cyber Command deputy.

Tighe is also a lead architect of the Fleet Command's five-year strategy, developed in part to respond to Iranian hacker intrusions into the Navy's vast and widely distributed network.  Her work included a push to detect and differentiate routine and critical threats on Navy networks. "I've got to have a diversity of different kinds of sensors and blocking capabilities and the analytic horsepower to be able to respond to that,” she told reporters in 2015.

The elevation of Tighe to this command also brings to a close an embarrassing chapter in the history of naval intelligence. Tighe's predecessor, Vice Adm. Ted "Twig" Branch, served in the post for more than two years with a suspended security clearance. Branch's clearance was suspended because his name came up in a corruption investigation. While Branch was never charged, his clearance was never restored, so he spent much of the recent years unable to view classified materials and receive classified briefings, severely curtailing his ability to do his job.

"The shortest version of the story is, it's frustrating in the extreme," Branch said at an AFCEA West conference, in remarks reported by Military.com. "Probably the most important point is, I am not a danger to national security, nor have I ever been, nor will I ever be, and the idea that I would be is insulting," he said.

Vice Adm. Mike Gilday is taking over for Tighe as commander of U.S. Fleet Cyber Command.

Posted by Adam Mazmanian on Jul 18, 2016 at 3:28 PM


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