The recent WikiLeaks exposure was a huge black eye for the U.S. Department of Defense, supposedly one of the more secure state organizations we have working for us. Its impact clearly wasn't lost on the Pentagon, whose blue sky research arm has launched a new project designed to ferret out malicious behavior on DoD networks. Named CINDER – Cyber INsiDER Threat – the project is designed not to sniff out people, but adversarial actions as they happen.
To quote DARPA's request for industry solicitations: "The goal of CINDER will be to greatly increase the accuracy, rate and speed with which insider threats are detected and impede the ability of adversaries to operate undetected within government and military interest networks."
The philosophy driving CINDER is the idea that singular actions by an insider with malicious intent aren't noticeable as malicious – say, the downloading of a sensitive document from a DoD server or the searching for information on a particular topic. But the larger adversary mission should be noticeable when compared to normal mission activities. By monitoring strings of actions rather than isolated events, CINDER is expected to pinpoint system users who may be up to something malicious.
CINDER assumes that insiders are operating within the Pentagon's most sensitive networks, so rather than focus on keeping outside threats out, it will be designed to weed out those already inside. As Danger Room points out, it seems like a recipe for false positives, but DARPA seems to think a properly-designed CINDER will be able to distinguish between normal and malicious mission contexts.
We'll see. In the meantime, while DARPA works CINDER into serviceable shape, the DoD is expected to roll out a new cyber strategy by year's end to hopefully curtail the kinds of massive leaks and cyber breaches that have been the embarrassment of the Pentagon lately.
Yeah... and after that just place web-cams on every person who works there and complete the fascism...
Isn't it interesting how people suddenly love the word fascism.
I would hope that a security organization would be allowed to implement actual security.
No one accuses casinos of being fascist and they watch everything and everybody.
Why should the DOD be any different?
webcams would be a good idea then you have video of them in the act, besides when you work for the military i think you have to give up some freedoms
Doesn't anyone think of the implications these things will have on humanity when Skynet goes live?
We're so screwed
Fatarion and Steggy,
This is on and I quote "Pentagon’s most sensitive networks" do you really believe that a person working on that kind of network should any kind of privacy at all? The only kind of activity that should be on that network is sensitive government work. It is not some kind X-Box play station for the people's amusement.
Stop making secrets and nothing will ever get leaked. Your battle will never end and your secrets will never be safe.