[ISN] Military pushes for wireless security

From: InfoSec News (isnat_private)
Date: Thu Nov 21 2002 - 07:18:22 PST

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    Forwarded from: William Knowles <wkat_private>
    By Dan Caterinicchia 
    Nov. 20, 2002
    Military leaders agree that wireless communication is the wave of the
    future, but they also agree that it needs far greater security
    features to become deployable and reliable on the battlefield.
    Air Force Maj. Gen. John Bradley, deputy commander of U.S. Strategic
    Command's joint task force for computer network operations, said the
    Defense Department not only needs more secure wireless tools, it also
    needs them to be smaller with solid encryption and authentication
    The joint task force, created about 18 months ago, is responsible for
    defending DOD networks from attack, according to Bradley, who was
    speaking during a Nov. 19 panel at the AFCEA International's TechNet
    Asia-Pacific International 2002 Conference and Exposition in Honolulu.
    There's still a long way to go in securing wireless products, said
    Brig. Gen. John Thomas, Marine Corps chief information officer. But he
    was glad to see that the National Security Agency had approved the use
    of some commercial products to protect classified communications up to
    the top-secret level using the Type 1 encryption algorithm available
    to authorized personnel.
    Thomas said the Marines are using Enhanced Position Location Reporting
    System radios to communicate securely on the battlefield while they
    await the Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS), which uses
    software-centric radios that can be programmed to patch users into
    various radio frequencies.
    For now, all of the military services must rely on their own solutions
    until JTRS will be ready to link them at end of decade, Thomas said.  
    To help address that problem, the services need "top-down" leadership
    from the Pentagon, he said.
    Rear Adm. Charles Munns, director of the Navy Marine Corps Intranet,
    said that the Navy has begun to address the problem by making the
    Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (Spawar) the system architect
    for the service's command, control, communications, computers and
    intelligence -- including wireless. Now, the Naval Air Systems Command
    and Naval Sea Systems Command go to Spawar for governance, he said.
    "Communications without intelligence is noise;  Intelligence
    without communications is irrelevant." Gen Alfred. M. Gray, USMC
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