The U.S. Air Force introduced a new task force as part of ongoing efforts to better address cyber threats and vulnerabilities impacting the core missions of the military branch.
In a memorandum signed March 20, Chief of Staff (CSAF) General Mark Walsh III established the Task Force Cyber Secure, responsible for addressing “challenges of the cyberspace domain in synchronization, operations and governance with the Air Force and those organizations it supports,” read the U.S. Air Force press release.
“This task force is fundamental to understanding the inherent risks within the cyberspace domain and instituting a culture change, in which our Airmen realize the impact cybersecurity has on all the Air Force core missions,” said Walsh.
According to Lt. Gen. Bill Bender, the Secretory of the Air Force (SECAF) chief of information dominance and chief information officer, the task force would focus on three main areas.
In addition to evaluating the extent of current cyber threats and vulnerabilities, Task Force Cyber Secure will work to develop a risk management plan and recommend investment priorities to the SECAF and CSAF for how to best address the cybersecurity challenges.
“The Air Force focuses the majority of the cybersecurity effort on protecting the information technology we’ve always protected the last 20 years, but that’s only 20 percent of the problem,” said Bender.
The new task force will help provide a comprehensive, enterprise-level look at the cyber threat as it relates to everything outside of that 20 percent, he added.
Cyberspace Operations and Warfighting Integration acting director Pete Kim will serve as the leader of the daily task force operations, ensuring the task force is inclusive of all cyberspace stakeholders across the Air Force branch.
“Many efforts for securing the core missions in cyberspace are currently distributed across multiple organizations and commands throughout the Air Force,” said Kim.
“… The time is right to look into opportunities to synchronize and maximize resources at the corporate level in order to establish a foundational, consistent enterprise-wide approach in the future.”