The Development of Cyber ​​Warfare in the United States, Part 7


As part of its 5G plan, in March 2022 the US Department of Defense awarded a three-year, $10 million contract to Cubic Nuvotronics, a wholly owned subsidiary of US-based Cubic Corporation. Under this contract, Cubic Nuvotronics will develop a high-performance, small, lightweight, low-power dual-band wireless network communications (WNCT) transceiver for military applications. WNCT’s concurrent dual-band operation provides greater operational resiliency and also ensures low latency for high-speed data without any interference with the current US Department of Defense scope. The Department awarded Viasat – a California-based communications company – two contracts in September 2021 to study the use and implementation of 5G networks on the battlefield, with the goal of exploring how 5G technology can improve operational capabilities. Viasat will leverage its cybersecurity, networking and 5G wireless expertise to help the Department of Defense (DOD) understand how best to use 5G technology to enable multi-domain operations in future Joint Operational Plans, including the Joint Cross-Domain Command and Control (JADC2) capabilities.

The contract covers two areas: first, the enhancement of command and control (C2) applications and services, and second, the implementation of the 5G Enhanced Network for Agile Combat Employment (ACE) operations in confrontational environments.

The US Space Force issued a request for information in March 2022 in the area of ​​5G technology research for the Space Data Transmission (SDT) program. Technologies of particular interest to the US Space Force include: 5G multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO); mmWave in space and radio access network slicing (a network configuration that allows multiple virtualized and independent networks to be created on a common physical infrastructure – a configuration that has become an essential component of the overall 5G architectural landscape); management of network sections; artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning; reliable autonomous networks; cyber security; Internet of Things in the 5G space (IoST); Multi-tenant edge computing (MEC); 5G air-to-ground networks and network topologies in space.

In September 2021, the Department of Defense also awarded Penguin Computing two contracts totaling $68 million to provide two high-performance supercomputers and associated capabilities to the Navy and Air Force. Funded by DOD’s High Performance Computing Modernization Program (HPCMP), the system and software will dramatically improve DOD’s ability to solve the toughest and most challenging computing problems. These advanced processing capabilities are available to all intelligence and DOD agencies.

These computers will be installed in two US Army Supercomputing Resource Centers (DSRC). Among them, the Navy’s DSRC at the John C. Stennis Space Center in southern Mississippi will receive a system capable of delivering 8.5 petaflops (a one-petaflop-per-second computer can perform a million billion comma operations float per second); and Wright-Patterson of the Air Force Research Laboratory at Dayton, Ohio, Air Force Base will receive 9 petaflops of computing power.

In September 2021, the National Security Agency (NSA) awarded Hewlett-Packard a $2 billion, 10-year contract to provide the high-performance computing power it needs for its artificial intelligence and data analytics needs. . Under the contract, Hewlett-Packard will provide a new service that includes a combination of Apollo data storage systems and a ProLiant server. The service will capture and process large amounts of data and support deep learning and artificial intelligence capabilities. This contract will provide the NSA with a secure and flexible platform to meet its growing data management needs.

The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) launched a Request for Information in September 2021 to seek innovative blockchain and interoperability solutions to protect highly sensitive data. DISA wants to explore the use of blockchain to ensure that critical data remains intact and unchanged throughout its lifecycle and to provide a warning mechanism if it is tampered with in any way. DISA would like to explore questions of the industry’s ability to leverage blockchain technology in order to: 1. Develop blockchain-independent schemes that are interoperable between different blockchains; 2. ensure the immutability of critical data and provide alerts on its falsification; 3. store critical data in decentralized and distributed mode.

U.S. Army Command, Control, Computers, Communications, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C5ISR) Engineers Harness Blockchain Technology to Enable New Management Capabilities data at the tactical level. The new data management capability development is part of the center’s Information Trust program and is one of several prototype technologies tested by the Army Network Modernization Experiment (NetModX) in May 2021.

The C5ISR says the key to the Information Trust program is to provide soldiers with a mathematical, verifiable way to examine their data from producer to consumer and from sensor to shooter. The military’s idea is to eliminate so-called man-in-the-middle attacks by manipulating data transmissions before they reach end users, allowing commanders to make critical decisions and increase confidence in their information and intelligence.

In early 2022, some exciting discoveries were made in quantum computing research funded by the U.S. Army and Air Force, including the University of Massachusetts Amherst, which found a new way to correct spontaneously quantum computing errors to protect quantum information from hyperthermia. The impact of errors in the guidance system can be greatly improved, helping to reduce the load on future computers. In addition, Louisiana State University corrected the distorted information in the quantum system composed of photons through machine learning technology, and the research results can be used in quantum communication, quantum cryptography, and quantum sensing. Finally, the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering at the University of Chicago has implemented a new method of quantum communication by sending entangled qubits through a communication cable to connect two network nodes, paving the way for the use of large-scale quantum networks.

Additionally, in January 2021, the US Air Force Research Laboratory announced that the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR), the National Research Foundation of Korea, and the Korea Institute for Planning and Information and Communication Technology Assessment (IITP) had jointly launched a call for tenders. provide three-year grants to jointly promote quantum information science and technology. The project aims to continue to provide opportunities for scientists and engineers from both countries to mutually advance emerging technologies. Future areas of collaborative research listed in the project include quantum information processing, quantum simulation, development of new qubits, and more.

In July 2021, the Department of Defense also announced the cancellation of a $10 billion cloud procurement contract for Joint Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) as it plans to use a new contract, the Joint Warfighter Cloud Capability (JWCC) which better matches the ministry cloud. Needs. The new contract has a significantly shorter runtime than the JEDI contract, totaling five years, including a three-year base term and two one-year optional terms. In November 2021, the department announced that it had issued a call for a Joint Warfare Cloud Capability (JWCC) to Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google, Microsoft, and Oracle.

The DOD Enterprise Cloud will have cross-classified capabilities (unclassified, classified, and high classification), integrated cross-domain solutions, i.e. global availability at the tactical edge, and enhanced cybersecurity.

In August 2021, the NSA awarded AWS a secret $10 billion cloud computing contract. The contract, dubbed Wild and Stormy, is the second cloud contract awarded last year by seventeen US intelligence agencies, including the NSA. The purchase appears to be part of the NSA’s attempt to modernize its primary repository for classified data, the Intelligence Community GovCloud.

Four crucial questions emerge about the entry of AI into the scene of the Ukrainian conflict:

1. the first results show the power of the AI, which allowed for example to intercept communications and to reconstruct dialogues, and to select and eliminate certain Russian commanders (see images of gray hair near elements of transmission as potential commanders);

2. many of these technologies are in private hands, as in the case of Primer, and this is where the public-private dilemma arises, especially in such circumstances;

3. The problem of algorithmic bias caused by poor quality or unrepresentative training data is of fundamental importance. Machine learning algorithms often work in an “opaque” way. Intelligence officers will need to find ways to build confidence in the conclusions drawn by these programs. Poorly transcribed communication could obviously have deadly consequences on a battlefield, such as sending soldiers into potential high-percentage hazards or misdirecting a missile attack that could cause “friendly” fire damage. ;

4. the advantage of speed in planning processes is the real dilemma for all staffs: being faster and more precise than the enemy in drawing up the plan will be the real added value of the battle, its corner stone. Collecting and analyzing data using artificial intelligence could therefore eventually become central to battlefield operations, as well as the need for leadership capable of managing “agile” processes and trained in the dimension ethics.

When we talk about AI, Machine Learning, etc., we are talking about agile methodologies, as opposed to traditional waterfalls. Cascades envision the linear execution of a precise sequence of phases, each of which generates an output that is used as input by the next phase (hence the origin of the term “cascade”). In a management and decision-making process, a real change of mentality of the leaders is necessary. The army is a precursor in this regard. In the army, we talk about war rooms, for example when agile methodologies are studied. A software is neither sufficient nor powerful enough if it is not accompanied by a clear leadership structure on the big picture, i.e. the strategic objectives, and at the same time able to function with the same flexibility as the software. Besides the fact that algorithms must be used, without losing the “ethical” dimension in the decision-making process.

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