Addressing the theme of "leveraging technology to achieve force dominance across the services," Navy Adm.
His central question to industry, he said, "is whether or not the department's information technology enterprise is meeting our warfighting needs, and if not, what can we do about it?"
The rapidly growing consumer IT market can provide advantages in that domain, Winnefeld noted, that are not available on the land, sea or in the air. "IT is one of the few things we have and do as a military that is virtually indistinguishable from the things the civilian world does," he said.
Winnefeld said leveraging competition in the commercial IT industry, while standardizing architecture across the forces, could help the department keep its decisive edge.
"Almost every element of our national security capability has an element of information technology at its heart," he noted. "The brains belong to our warfighters, but the nerves are the network."
The department is growing its capacity to operate in the cyber domain, adding 4,000 cyber operators over the next four years and investing
-- National mission teams that will support the
-- A larger set of teams supporting combatant commanders in executing military missions around the globe; and
-- The largest set of teams, which will operate and defend U.S. military networks worldwide.
"These three teams will constitute our cyber force," he said. "And as anyone who reads the newspapers knows, we are also increasingly contending with how to prevent breaches from inside."
Scrutiny and oversight are some defense against insider threat, he said, "but the best thing we can do to defend against both the internal and external threat is to transform the very foundation of our network architecture - something we are calling JIE."
The new platform won't solve every issue, he acknowledged, but it will offer "better integration of information technologies in operations while increasing our ability to respond to security breaches across the system as a whole."
The transition enables a new level of cooperation among the services in the IT realm, he said, "akin to the higher levels of jointness we have achieved in other areas."
Beginning with standardizing email so that service members can all reach each other, he said, "ultimately, JIE will allow far deeper and wider operational synchronization in areas like joint fires and maneuver - something especially important as units at the edge increasingly rely on capabilities and effects generated in the center."
By integrating and consolidating information systems,
"This is the first step in collapsing dozens more network command and control nodes for bases, posts, camps, and stations, significantly reducing the network management overhead," Winnefeld noted. "We've never had end-to-end visibility in the enterprise like this before, or the added security that comes with it."
Experimentation on the JIE architecture is beginning to flourish, he said, and small companies have thus far proven agile competitors in designing for the system against larger, established defense industries.
JIE will enable innovation in every corner of the military, the admiral said. "We still build platforms the same old way," he added, "but the things that ride on them, including and especially IT, have to be super-agile."
Innovation and a joint information environment, he said, will ensure "the warfighter is more effective, the nation is safer, and more businesses can work with
Most Popular Stories
- Slow Week Ahead of December FOMC Meeting
- Hispanics Seek to Grow School Board Members
- 'Knockout Game': Myth or Menace?
- U.S. Companies Eager for Iranian Business
- Questions Remain in Jenni Rivera's Death
- Banks Fret as Volcker Vote Approaches
- Entrepreneurs' Next Creation May Be New Laws
- GM Bailout Saved 1.2 Million U.S. Jobs, Report Says
- Bitcoin Used to Buy Tesla Car
- Paul Walker Fans Pay Respects