US cyber command chief says military computer networks vulnerable to attack

Posted By: Staff
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Washington, June 4 (ANI): General Keith B. Alexander, who also heads the US National Security Agency, the nation's largest intelligence agency, has warned that America's military computer networks are vulnerable to attack, and urged the Department of Defense to take steps defend its resources in cyberspace.

Addressing over 300 people at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington on Thursday, General Alexander said he was concerned about the safety of computer systems used in war zones.

"The concern I have is when you look at what could happen to a computer, clearly sabotage and destruction are things that are yet to come. If we don't defend our systems, people will be able to break them," the Washington Post quoted General Alexander, as saying.

James A. Lewis, director of CSIS's Technology and Public Policy Program, said advanced militaries are capable of destroying U.S. computer systems.

"That wasn't true four years ago, but it's true now and Cyber Command will have to deal with it," he said.

The Cyber Command, launched last month at Fort Meade, was created by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates to streamline the military's capabilities to attack and defend in cyberspace, supported by NSA's intelligence capabilities.

Alexander stressed that the Command will focus on protecting the U.S. military's 15,000 computer networks under oversight of the special Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court, Congress and the administration.

His remarks were aimed at assuaging concerns over the NSA's role in helping to protect civilian and private-sector networks, as well as fears of a "militarization" of cyberspace. (ANI)

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