“Long-lead time program development isn't appropriate in the cyber world, where an attack can happen anytime, anywhere,” says SPAWAR panelist Tom Byrnes, CEO of ThreatSTOP, a San-Diego based cybersecurity company. “What works for making sure wings don't fall off planes won't work for defending against a virus that changes every 24 hours or an attacker who changes IP address every 10 seconds.”
Fortunately, the military understands its shortcomings in these areas and that the private sector is much better at adopting and adapting to new technology. Thus, the panel.
There is real urgency to the collaboration. Saint-Clair says there are an estimated 6 million cyber-attacks on U.S. government computers around the world every day – which is also why this collaboration is truly a two-way street.
The fact that the military is forced to defend itself against such an onslaught means it has much to teach the private sector and medical technology companies, as well, about how to fend off ongoing threats.