Military & Aerospace

Cyber Warfare: The New Threat
Star Rating Loader Please wait...
Issue Vol. 26.4 Oct-Dec 2011 | Date : 14 Dec , 2012

The Israelis established in Umbrella C4I in Mar 2003. By 2007 all intelligence networks were connected, sharing all sensor information. The network includes fixed sites as well as mobile sites. During 2009 Gaza conflict Israeli Air Force down loaded sensor imagery on U-tube; its tweets warned of rocket attacks and it used ‘’ blog to mobilize public support.6

Placed below are the recommendations with respect to Cyber War by a USAF study in 2008. The study was undertaken to suggest needed reorganization within the USAF for 2018-2023 time frame. Cyber War is a new domain for all the countries. It appears that USA and China have a lead in Cyber War domain over India of about ten years. The emphasis placed by them on cyber war is instructive for us to take note.7

Cyberspace : Boundless Opportunity and Significant Vulnerabilities

  • USAF must not focus solely on protecting its databases, but rather it must also protect its networks and the functioning of electronic devices to enable cyberspace control.
  • USAF must be prepared to conduct warfare in cyberspace to secure the domain at the time and place of its choosing.
  • Call for an interagency commission to resolve the issues of jurisdictional authority and, if needed, author legislation for title 10 revision.
  • While offense offers a distinct advantage for airpower, deterrence and defense must become co-equal propositions in cyberspace.
  • Reclaim the internet, moving to a closed network, one that does not allow interaction with its civilian counterpart in any capacity or other open systems across the DOD.
  • View cyberspace holistically, developing organizations and tactics to defend regardless of location, while retaining freedom of action for our forces.
  • Develop system resiliency, with a layered defense in depth, that reacts to threats and sets in motion procedures for post – attack recovery.
  • Develop and field self-diagnosing and self-healing systems with adequate redundant capacity for survivability.
  • Develop systems to support real – time Cyberspace Situational Awareness (CSA)
  • Develop a new corps of professionals capable of waging cyber warfare.
  • Develop a structured professional development curriculum with a UCT school that provides the needed military education required for newly minted second lieutenants.
  • Create a National Cyberspace Studies Institute (NCSI) that provides an increased understanding of cyber operations appropriate for success at the advanced ranks.
  • Ensure adequate pay, attendance at the right schools – PME and weapons school – and promotion.
  • Find a home/advocate for future cyber – warriors, one equal to that of air/space.
  • Identify Guard and Reserve billets for cyber – professionals who are separate from active duty.
  • Develop a construct to incorporate Guard and Reserve into the “fight”, either through stand – alone units or as a part of active duty units.
  • Develop a Cyberspace Red Team to probe DOD networks and provide input for offensive, defensive, and counter offensive strategy.
  • Develop an industry council where senior military and industry representatives convene to establish requirements and propose technological solutions.
  • Partner with the private sector – universities and commercial industry to properly leverage American expertise.


  1. Thomas C. Reed, “At the Abyss – An Insider’s History of the Cold War,” Ballantine Books, New York, 2004, p. 268.
  2. “USAF Strategy – Past, Present & Future 2018 – 2003” AF Research Institute, 2008. Gen John A. Shaud Ph. D Air University, Jan 2009, pp. 45-50.
  3. AWST 04 Nov. 2002.
  4. AWST 05 Apr 2010, pp. 48-51.
  5. AWST 05 Apr. 2004, p. 48.
  6. In a Speech by Chief of RAF at Information Superiority Conference, 2010.
  7. John A. Shaud Ph.D, General, USAF, Retired “In Service to the Nation – Air Force Research Institute Strategic Concept for 2018-2023.” Air University Press, Maxwell Air Force Base Alabama, Jan 2009.
1 2 3
Rate this Article
Star Rating Loader Please wait...
The views expressed are of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of the Indian Defence Review.

About the Author

More by the same author

Post your Comment

2000characters left