Pentagon falling short in using electromagnetic spectrum to defend networks and communications, GAO says

April 8, 2021
Developing new tools in military RF spectrum management crosses into the DOD’s software goals since much of it is based on software-defined radios.

WASHINGTON – U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) officials might know that they need to put in more work to improve how DOD uses the electromagnetic spectrum, but so far that work has been lacking, according to expert testimony. Fed Scoop reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

8 April 2021 -- The DOD still needs to empower high-ranking leaders to push spectrum initiatives -- a key goal of the department’s spectrum strategy published in September, says Joseph Kirschbaum, director for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) Defense Capabilities and Management Team.

Pentagon experts developed their spectrum strategy to claim superiority in building and defending networks after two decades of warfare with low-tech adversaries. Kirschbaum highlighted previous recommendations of a GAO report from December for the department to create long-term oversight to ensure the spectrum strategy gets implemented.

Potential adversaries like China and Russia have developed weapons to disrupt U.S. networks and communications using spectrum, the hearing’s witnesses told lawmakers. The ability to disrupt DOD’s networks would be damaging in a battle now, and even more devastating in the future as the DOD turns to rely more on spectrum to run operations.

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John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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