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US Navy also planning Cyberwar Command

An adversary for US airforce cybertroops at last?

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Not to be outdone by the US Air Force with its "Cyber Force", the US Navy is now planning a uniformed cyberwar legion too. The dark blue nerd-force will be called the Naval Cyber Forces Command.

Govexec.com reports on the naval moves, citing an internal document apparently passed to the news source by "an Air Force reader". The US airmen have lately downgraded their planned cyber force somewhat following accusations of empire-building by the other services.

"Cyberspace has become the global battlespace", says the document. "The next battle is the information domain and the first shots have already been fired ... The effects we can produce in and through cyberspace range from simple deterrence to destruction and defeat of any adversary".

It appears that the sailors are at least as hungry for bureaucratic lebensraum as the airmen, with the Cyber Forces Command tipped to be commanded by a three-star vice admiral - who would thus probably outrank the airforce cyber general on current plans.

In contrast to the airmen, the navy has no plans to create a dedicated netwarrior career path. The planned cyber-scuffler sailors will come from existing communications, computer and electronics branches.

The Naval Cyber Forces Command, according to the plans, will be created by further enlarging and upgrading the existing Naval Network Warfare Command. This body has previously engulfed Naval Space Command, Naval Computer and Telecommunications Command, the Fleet Information Warfare Center, the Navy Component Task Force-Computer Network Defense and the Naval Security Group. Now it will also take on certain Fleet Intelligence functions as well, with Govexec's sources suggesting that intel people "may have to be dragged kicking and screaming" into the nerd force*.

Approval for the navy's ambitious cyber plans will need to be granted by the central Department of Defense authorities, who will decide just how the US forces will corporately cut up the new cyberforce cake in coming months.

The Govexec report can be read here. ®

*We submit that this may be because people might now realise that most of their highly-classified intel is actually cribbed straight from the internet. Anyway, it was back when we were regularly forced to read naval intelligence material.

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