U.S. military faces challenges of ensuring that digital encryption of mobile computers is a high priority

Feb. 18, 2020
Law enforcement should be concerned about gaining access to data, while technology companies should continue making the most secure products possible.

WASHINGTON – Last month, a brigade of U.S. soldiers deployed to the Middle East received instructions from their superiors to use two commercial encrypted messaging applications, Signal and Wickr, on their military-issued cell phones. Cyberscoop reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

18 Feb. 2020 -- These leadership cues trickled down from the Department of Defense’s (DoD) position that strong encryption is critical to national security. While U.S. Attorney General William Barr continues to push for a broad mandate for backdoors for law enforcement, those on the front lines of protecting America have notably decided on a different approach. Simply put, weakening encryption means putting our military service members at risk.

In a recent letter to U.S. Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., the Pentagon's Chief Information Officer Dana Deasy made clear that the use of encryption to protect the mobile computers of U.S. service members and their stored data is an “imperative.”

Deasy makes clear that the use of commercial encryption and virtual private networks (VPNs) are key to DoD’s cybersecurity strategy. Therefore, “maintaining a domestic climate for state-of-the-art security and encryption is critical to the protection of our national security.”

Related: Marine Corps chooses military communications, trusted computing, and encryption equipment from PacStar

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John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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