the US government has created a secret list of foreign targets called the Offensive Cyber Effects Operations.
The US Department of Defense is embarking on a colossal expansion of its cybersecurity program, planning to inject almost $23 billion in the sector for the next five years, a report says.
According to documents recently obtained by Bloomberg
, the Pentagon’s five-year “cyber-expense” budget outlines the need for additional funds - $4.65 billion in the fiscal year beginning October, $4.72 billion in 2015, $4.61 billion in 2016, $4.45 billion in 2017, and $4.53 billion in 2018.
The package aims at safeguarding computer networks as well as creating offensive capabilities, which would also benefit defense contractors.
“Increased investment will be made in protecting critical infrastructures…for use against our adversaries and enhancing overall security of DoD [Department of Defense] networks and systems,” said Harry Raduege, with Deloitte Center for Cyber Innovation.
The Presidential Policy Directive 20 says the US government has created a secret list of foreign targets called the Offensive Cyber Effects Operations (OCEO), and can launch attacks “with little or no warning,” and with “potential effects ranging from subtle to severely damaging.”
The document does not specify if the attacks are only carried out in reprisal for similar operations by another country, and only implies that the US can employ the tool in a first-use rule as long as it advances Washington’s national interests worldwide. It clarifies how both offensive and defensive cyber operations are instrumental in US strategy.
This is while US intelligence officials believe China and Russia are the sources of a significant number of cyber attacks on American companies and government agencies.
On May 30, China’s Defense Ministry condemned a US report that alleged Chinese hackers had gained access to designs of over two dozen major US weapons systems.