Friday, December 09, 2005

Thoughts on New Air Force Mission

Slashdot alerted me to the new US Air Force mission statement, which reads:

"The mission of the United States Air Force is to deliver sovereign options for the defense of the United States of America and its global interests -- to fly and fight in Air, Space, and Cyberspace. "

The mission used to be "to defend the United States and protect its interests through air and space power."

When I served we made the "transition" from an air force to a so-called aerospace force. It was an important step to recognize that space would be another arena for combat. Now the new mission statement has added cyberspace to the list of arenas in which the Air Force will fight.

The Air Force has been fighting in cyberspace for decades. The battle became especially interesting in the early 1990s when we decided to deploy ASIM sensors to monitor networks. ASIM, or Automated Security Incident Measurement, was a network-based IDS built on Todd Heberlein's Network Security Monitor (NSM). NSM was the first network-based IDS. Prior to NSM, intrusion detection was done by watching activity on hosts.

I am gratified to see the Air Force step up to the plate and declare that it will have a formal operational cyberspace responsibility. This recognition might help units tasked with performing this mission receive the resources they need to win in cyberspace.

"Nothing can stop the US Air Force!" :)

10 comments:

Rocky D. said...

Formal and public acknowledgement of the importance of Information Warfare to national and world security I love the new mission statement. As a former AFCERT team member and former enlisted AF intel weenie I've always been very proud of what was accomplished and now what can be accomplished!!!

John Ward said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
John Ward said...

I was wondering if you were going to comment on this =)

So how long until Army (ACERT), Navy (NCIRT), and DOD (DOD-CERT) try to follow suit and stake their claims to "cyberspace" defense. Anyway, good for the Air Force in putting out a bold new mission statement that clearly states they do more than just "fly". Maybe this will generate some interest into what these guys do and sway some interested parties to pursue a career track in their direction.

Anonymous said...

For your former AFCERTers - just keep in mind that the AFCERT doesn't exist anymore and that certain DISA generals (Gen Q.) hates the term CERT but loves the term NOSC. I experienced it while she was CG 5th Sig Cmd, but maybe it was because the US Army RCERT-Europe didn't belong to her (it belongs to ACERT/1st Info Ops Cmd Land).

So hence ACERT has formed the A2TOC with the ANOSC, AFCERT is now AFNOSC NSD, and DoDCERT is JTF-GNO NetDefense. I'm afraid CERT is a dying term in the DoD.

Thomas

John Ward said...

Wow... I knew the govt. was fond of their "alphabet soup agencies", but thats friggin rediculous.

Anonymous said...

In regards to the poster who said that RCERT-E belongs to 1st IO CMD. I would love for those guys to see your comment. In their opinion they don't belong to anyone and they let 1st IO know it all the time!

Anonymous said...

Follow on who the RCERT-E belongs to - I've been away from the Imperial 5th Sig Cmd too long.

Org chart and reality may be two different things....

Thomas

Anonymous said...

No, you are right on paper. RCERT-E does belong operationally to 1st IO, but they(RCERT-E) tell 1st IO how they are going to do business. It's like the tail wagging the dog here.

Anonymous said...

That is all bs about Gen Q. the structure and terms where all set up while she was still a bird somewhere. Anyone who knows anything about the history of the AFCERT/DODCERT, The CERT (CC Melon) knows the JTF-GNO stood up by DISA in 1998 was alwyas going to evolve to what it is today. It just takes longer for folks away from the DC flag pole to catch on especially in EUCOM Land...

Anonymous said...

In Response to Anonymous comment about RCERT-E belonging to 1st IO CMD. RCERT-E does belong to 1st IO CMD in every way, shape and form. All Army RCERTs do. Yes, it is true that some of the RCERTs do not like being told what to do, but in the end they all do as told.