According to a story in the Washington Post, the Pentagon is developing a suite of advanced generation cyber-defense weapons that can best be described as “taking the battle to the enemy.” The tools can “attack and exploit adversary information systems” and can “deceive, deny, disrupt, degrade and destroy” information and information systems, according to Defense Department budget documents.
Gen. Keith Alexander, the head of the Pentagon’s new Cyber Command, told an audience in Tampa this month “We have to have offensive capabilities, to, in real time, shut down somebody trying to attack us.”
Deputy Secretary of Defense William J. Lynn III has said the approach includes “reaching out” to block malicious software “before they arrive at the door” of military networks. “We need to be able to protect our networks,” Lynn said in a May interview. “And we need to be able to retain our freedom of movement on the worldwide networks.”
Military officials have declared that cyberspace is the fifth domain – along with land, air, sea and space – and is crucial to battlefield success.