Technology Today - Home
 
 
This issue of "Technology Today" is about the cyberdomain and the technologies employed to protect and respond to attacks against information and computing systems. The struggle is ongoing.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates said in a CBS News interview last year that the U.S. is "under cyberattack virtually all the time, every day." The Department of Homeland Security reported an 800 percent increase in cyberattacks from 2005 through 2007. Others estimate that in 2008, the U.S. lost $1 trillion in intellectual property, one byte at a time. Referring to cyberattacks, Air Force Gen. Kevin P. Chilton, the commander of U.S. Strategic Command, told reporters on May 7, 2009, "The Law of Armed Conflict will apply to this domain."1

As the country is organizing to better operate in cyberspace, Raytheon is there. Raytheon brings a history of technological innovations to the battlefield because computing systems and critical information are part of every weapon system, sensor, communications network, and command and control center it develops. Raytheon also continues to assemble the best technical talent in the world of information operations and assurance, and invests to integrate its talent and technologies.

Definitions
Information operations (IO) encompasses the technologies and techniques to affect and defend information. In the broadest sense, IO includes everything from leafleting campaigns to electronic warfare technology. But this issue of "Technology Today" is about the part of IO known as computer network operations — the ability to control cyberspace — and the thread common to the stream of troubling headlines. Although it's typical to talk about the defensive side of computer network operations (information assurance) as distinct from the offensive (computer network attack and exploitation), it's not practical to think about one without the other. A person designing a secure system had better understand how an adversary would attack it. And someone trying to infiltrate an adversary's system must protect his exploit from detection and secure its communication. Many technologies are neither inherently offensive nor defensive: What would you call a software process designed to monitor a computer's operation, respond to interesting events, and run without detection? A good anti-virus program or spyware?

As with traditional warfare, operations in the cyberdomain need to integrate and orchestrate many assets: forward-deployed sensors detect potential threats; analytics process the information to characterize an attack (Who is attacking? What are their objectives?); and proactive measures neutralize the threat before it reaches the target. Operations in the cyberdomain share some challenges with less traditional irregular or asymmetric warfare, like how to attribute threats to specific adversaries, or predicting consequences when we can wield overwhelming force. This issue emphasizes the defensive applications and an array of techniques to bring command and control to cyberspace, as well as our own strategy for cyberdomain technology.

Raytheon's approach begins with its customers, and with the recognition that they view cyberspace from different perspectives. The first article discusses these differences, reveals what is common, and talks about operational needs and technology gaps, using techniques from the Raytheon Enterprise Architecture Process. Because the concept of fighting in cyberspace is new to many customers, Raytheon works closely with them to anticipate their needs. This element of our technology strategy is reflected in several articles about Raytheon cybertechnology in use, what we've learned as our customers' needs are evolving, and what we are doing to meet them.

The cybermarket is broad and the technology challenges numerous, and we must reach out beyond Raytheon to address them. In this issue, we look at some recent Raytheon acquisitions — unique small companies employing the best and brightest that add to our cybercapabilities.

Raytheon will always value innovation. Through many types of research and development funding we continue to invest in strategic technology. In this issue, we address several innovations coming out of our R&D efforts.

There's a lot of innovation going on in universities and small businesses. Raytheon actively sponsors advances in cybertechnology by directing basic academic research: endorsing promising small businesses as they pursue Small Business Innovation Research grant opportunities, building cooperative research and development agreements with national labs, and joining government-industry exercises. Our articles on partnerships describe where we are helping to transition emerging technologies, or where universities are helping us improve our own.

Jon Goding

1 Jeff Schogol, "Official: No options 'off the table' for U.S. response to cyber attacks," Stars and Stripes, Mideast Edition, May 8, 2009.