Information Assurance and Network Security

Wednesday April 5, 2006

What is it? Information assurance (IA) and network security ensure the confidentiality, availability, and integrity of information across the entire spectrum of military operations in an environment characterized by rapid technology change that is subject to increasing frequency of attacks from a sophisticated and organized cyber threat ranging from nation states and transnational terrorist and criminal organizations to hackers and vandals capable of entering networks via cyberspace from any geographic location worldwide. IA defends the LandWarNet by employing a defense-in-depth strategy that integrates people, technology, and operations, supported by a trained/skilled workforce that employs multiple IA protective measures layered from the perimeter to the desktop.

What has the Army done? Army's approach concentrates on protecting information, defending systems and networks, providing IA situational awareness, fostering innovation, and creating an empowered workforce. The Army issued over one million Common Access Cards (CAC) in FY 05 as part of its Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) program to protect information. Army is now in the initial phase of the next step in securing information, the implementing two factor authentication. Army has updated its aging cryptographic capabilities by successfully programming and integrating communications security (COMSEC) equipment, key management processes and associated support items into the Army inventory. The Army's Network Operations and Security Center (ANOSC) / Computer Emergency Response Team (ACERT) now provides a coordinated, centrally managed capability to identify threats and respond to cyber attacks across the enterprise. The Information Assurance Vulnerability Management (IAVM) process to find, fix, report, and verify compliance with DoD mandates has improved significantly with the deployment of DoD provided automated scanning and remediation tools, innovative reporting capabilities, and increased compliance verification inspections. Most importantly, Army has created a robust training program for IA professionals that will require certifications as validation of the knowledge and skills of the Army's military, civilian, and contractor IA workforce.

What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future? The Keystone to future security is the creation of an integrated information technology service delivery capability to replace the Army's patchwork, uncoordinated network infostructure. Essential to this process is the consolidation of network access points into a limited number of area processing centers (APC) where state-of-the-art defense-in-depth technologies and processes will be employed. APCs will not only improve network security policy enforcement, but greatly reduce both the amount of information technology hardware and the system administrators required to manage it. The Army, in conjunction with the joint community, is developing and implementing an IA sensor grid to enhance defense-in-depth of the global information grid (GIG) in support of Army and combatant commands worldwide. These tools will enhance the Army's ability to proactively mitigate vulnerabilities and improve capabilities to detect and react to attacks on Army networks. Army is also investigating innovative technologies to improve defense-in-depth at the most critical level, the host, as the foundation of future IA security capabilities.

Why is this important to the Army? IA is the foundational pillar of information dominance in a net-centric warfare environment. It assures the capability of the LandWarNet to provide reliable communications for a global force and dramatically improve the warfighting capabilities of Army forces across the full spectrum of conflict.

The content for this focus came directly from the 2006 Army Posture Statement-Addendum J.


Army Safety Program

The Chief of Staff of the Army has mandated several initiatives aimed at enabling commanders in the field to manage risk as they accomplish the demanding missions of fighting a Global War on Terrorism and transforming. Here is a link that should be very helpful... gives you just what you need to help develop your safety program: It can also be found on the front page of the Combat Readiness Center's website at


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