Lt. Gen. Alexander to Head Cyber Command

The National Security Agency director Lt. Gen. Keith B. Alexander has just been named the new commander of the Pentagon’s Cyber-Command.

LT. Gen Alexander is being promoted to full four star status and the 58 year old General will be moving to NSA’s Ft. Meade headquarters to take advantage of that agencies penetration and defense expertise.

The command will fall under the US Strat Com out of Nebraska and is scheduled to be fully operational by October.

For the full story, head on over to The Washington Post and read the article by Ellen Nakashima;

Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said that the department is pleased with the Senate’s confirmation of Alexander, adding that “Gen. Alexander brings a wealth of experience and expertise to address the many security challenges facing the Department in this domain.”

For LTG Alexander’s biography, you can head on over to the NSA/CSS site and view his entire Bio there;

ieutenant General Keith B. Alexander, USA, is the Director, National Security Agency/Chief, Central Security Service (NSA/CSS), Fort George G. Meade, MD. As the Director of NSA and Chief of CSS, he is responsible for a combat support agency of the Department of Defense with military and civilian personnel stationed worldwide.

I know there’s currently a lot of openings with the NSA at Ft. Meade for multiple IT and Security related positions ranging from general IT technician to Security Analyst.  It’s going to be interesting how things play out with the new Cyber Command and how it affects how both military and civillian agencies do IT security.  We’ll have to wait and see.

I’m not sure what actual combat experience LtG Alexander has, but I do know that he was in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm in Saudi Arabia.  My personal feelings are that a Cyber Command needs to have the leash ‘off’ and be able to do what needs to be done in a ‘combat’ situation.  As anyone in IT security knows, when you’re fighting someone/something in cyber space, it’s a ‘live combat’ situation that you need to make decisions on the fly, you can’t wait for a committee to approve a decision.

I know that he’s not going to make the actual day to day decisions on things, but he needs to be able to over look operations as a combat commander would and be able to make those real time commands.  He needs to have people underneath him to be able to also make real time combat decisions. I don’t know what the new command has in the line of supervisors and/or leaders, but it will be interesting to see how it turns out.

I do have concerns however as the policy issues governing offensive action in cyberspace have yet to be ironed out.  Before October roles around, they better make some serious decisions on how the cyber command will be allowed to act/re-act. And it can not be in a passive mode as the current cyber defenses have been.

Just my two cents worth.


~ by Normanomicon on May 12, 2010.

One Response to “Lt. Gen. Alexander to Head Cyber Command”

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