To access the remainder of this piece of premium content, you must be registered with Firehouse. Already have an account? Login
Register in seconds by connecting with your preferred Social Network.
Complete the registration form.
Recently, I have been advocating the creation of a website that would provide information to the nation's first responders. I would like to update you on several initiatives that are underway and again ask, "Where does the first responder fit into this new information infrastructure that is being designed?"
At a recent terrorism workshop put on by the University of Virginia, I met Assistant Secretary of Defense John T. Stenbit. He shared the new information concepts, which are outlined as part of the Department of Defense's future vision. Here is an overview:
People throughout the trusted, dependable and ubiquitous network are empowered by their ability to access information and recognized for the inputs they provide.
Lead the Information Age transformation of the Defense Department by building the foundation for network-centric operations through policies, program oversight, resource allocation, and the provision of value-added support.
1. Make information available on a network that people depend on and trust.
- Achieve a ubiquitous, secure and robust network.
- Eliminate bandwidth, frequency and computing capability limitations.
- Deploy collaborative capabilities and other performance support tools.
- Secure and assure the network and the information.
2. Populate the network with new, dynamic sources of information to defeat the enemy.
- Populate the network with all data (intelligence, non-intelligence raw and processed).
- Continuously refresh the content of the network.
- Consider that all users of information also are suppliers-post before you process.
- Improve sensemaking.
- Develop new ways to gain access to adversary information.
- Continuously surprise the enemy with information we are using.
3. Deny the enemy comparable advantages and exploit weaknesses.
- Effectively conduct offensive information operations.
- Implement full spectrum security.
- Conduct aggressive counterintelligence.
- Collect persistent, responsive, exquisite, intelligence.
Stenbit further stated that first responders would have access to such a network and that trusted information could be found easily on this network, as it would be tagged and categorized accordingly.
I understand that it would take several years to develop such a network and even then it is questionable as to how "first responders" fit into this Defense vision.
John Tritak, director of the Critical Infrastructure Assurance Office (CIAO), advised that his office too has an initiative to develop an "Information Infusion Office," where all information would be collected and then provided to various groups. There is nothing definitive at this time regarding this information resource and its relationship with first responders.
CIAO was created in response to a Presidential Decision Directive (PDD-63) in May 1998 to coordinate the federal government's initiatives on critical infrastructure assurance. CIAO's primary areas of focus are to raise issues that cut across industry sectors and ensure a cohesive approach to achieving continuity in delivering critical infrastructure services. The office's major initiatives are to:
- Coordinate and implement the national strategy.
- Assess the U.S. government's own risk exposure and dependencies on critical infrastructure.
- Raise awareness and educate public understanding and participation in critical infrastructure protection efforts.
- Coordinate legislative and public affairs to integrate infrastructure assurance objectives into the public and private sectors.
CIAO's role was recently expanded with the establishment of the President's Critical Infrastructure Protection Board by Executive Order 13231. Tritak was appointed as a member of the board and serves on its Coordination Committee. He also serves as the board staff's senior director for public-private outreach.