TEHRAN, Jun. 03 (Press Shia Agency) – The United States has made progress in coordinating cybercrime operations; however, creating a coherent national strategy for support and deterrence is out of reach.
Donald Trump, immediately after he was elected president of the United States, made information security a top priority for his programs, and he sought to make significant improvements to cyber defense and security. Of course, in previous administrations, there were also innovative plans and solutions to intensify the capacity of services and agencies in this field, which was also reaffirmed in Trump administration.
The first cornerstone of this area during the Terra period, in 2016, was to prepare and publish the “Strategic Review of Cyberspace”, in order to strengthen the cyber-security intelligence architecture. Since then, there have been other documents and reports on specific aspects of information development, including the issue of identity support, but in the first document there were key findings that applied key changes in subsequent American projects.
Each of the various ministries, services and agencies of varying degrees are required to provide security related areas for their skills. The former administration has been monitoring the division of activities in this area since 2008 by overseeing all cyber-security intelligence activities and coordinating the activities of all agencies with the US Department of Homeland Security, thereby providing public infrastructure and support for people.
In January 2008, the United States decided to expand the coordination spectrum of measures by adding “inclusive national cyber security measures” by adding intelligence and invasive dimensions. In 2016, the US government mandated the Department of Homeland Security to set up a national center for follow-up and monitoring of cyber-security activities. The center is named “Integrated National Cyber Security Communications and Security Center”, and its mission is to provide a common operational view of the state of cyberspace to all of the federal services. All US services, including the Pentagon, the National Security Agency and the FBI, are involved in equipping this permanent operational center.
In addition, a Memorandum of Understanding was inked between the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense, which, at the time of approval of the center, allowed the merger of a group of “National Security Agency” into the organization.
Following the publication of the Strategic Review Document 2016, the US president appointed a national interface in the executive branch and assigned two responsibilities:
1. Develop a coherent strategy at the level of ministries, agencies and services.
2. Enhance national security with the private sector.
International aspects are another priority of the Trump government in the field of cyber-security intelligence. The 2016 Strategic Review Document presents a plan for developing an international strategy that emphasizes the development of a judicial staffing and strengthening partnerships with US allies. The plan also refers to the need to improve relations with emerging countries in order to develop a multifaceted norm and transnational equipment to respond to cyber-security threats.
However, it is a question of what level of intervention (nature, severity, frequency, and purpose) is considered as a warrant. In fact, by highlighting this risk, experts point out that red lines, which may be easily and simply violated, reduce the credibility of deterrence. Such a situation will not only reduce the threshold for a counter-attack response to an attack, but also may even create a risk that makes managing progress difficult with potential attackers.
However, cooperation with all actors in this area is essential, but does not exempt the government from its security duties. In fact, the “2016 Strategic Review Document” emphasizes the need to develop new links with the private and participatory sectors, but also points out that in the event of significant accidents, the White House will be responsible for coordinating and implementing a counter-responsive response.
In addition to national reflections, at the heart of the US Department of Defense, measures are being taken to better coordinate military and service interventions, as well as to create a strategic cadre for cybercrime operations. Similarly, in 2008, Starter Com’s command published a concept of cybercrime operations. Finally, the Quartet Defense Review Document cites the ability to operate in cyberspace as one of the priorities of the Department of Defense and US forces in support of defense equipment and systems and outstripping other rivals in this event.
Dr. Sajad Abedi holds a Ph.D. in National Security Studies from MIT Center for International Studies. He has formerly been a member of the Board of Directors of Passive Defense Organization of Iran. He is currently a member of Defense and National Security Think Tank, Director of the International Relations Group of Iranian Association of Geopolitics, and visiting researcher at Scientific Research and Middle East Strategic Studies Center. He has published numerous articles and research works in the field of command and control systems, security theories, analysis and explanation of information, cyber theorizing, and Security mainstreaming in the press and specialized publications.