Pentagon Fails to Disclose Covert Cyber Ops

Thursday, January 13, 2011



A classified report on military operations provided to Congress by he Pentagon failed to disclose any information regarding the military's use of cyber-based operations and tactics, although it is assumed cyber ops have become routine.

The Senate Armed Services Committee registered their concern that no details of cyber ops were provided in the clandestine activities report, provided to Congress on a quarterly basis.

The Pentagon's assistant secretary for special operations, Michael Vickers, replied to the Congressional concerns by questioning whether or not cyber ops are covered by the law that dictates what should be covered in the reports.

Vickers, who has been nominated for the position of undersecretary of defense for intelligence, argues that the law only requires reporting of clandestine human intelligence activity, but also said he supports expanding the scope of the reports to Congress.

"It would be my intent, if confirmed, to fully comply with that responsibility, to include cyber activities," Vickers said.

Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,indicated in statements that the Pentagon believes China poses a significant threat to cyber security, and that more attention needs to be paid to cyber defense.

On the current state of U.S. cyber defenses, Mullen stated that the country needs to "come to a place where, again, those threats are diminished, if not eliminated."



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