Air Force looking into botnet defense system?

Back in the Cold War era, the military’s plans for developing the next generation of war-fighting capabilities were always a closely guarded secret; programs for developing cutting-edge bombs and missiles were highly classified, and you certainly didn’t need the public’s permission to invent new ways to roast the enemy. But in the Internet era, the technical realities associated with carrying out cyber warfare on a largely civilian network infrastructure dictate that if you build a massive military botnet aimed at shutting down enemy networks with distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, then you can expect that the public will find out what you’re up to sooner or later. And they may not be all that happy about it.

Hence articles like the one that Col. Charles W. Williamson III recently published in the Armed Services Journal (via Slashdot), wherein he tries to make the public case for a military botnet as a prelude to actually building such a beast and placing it under the Air Force’s control. Williamson’s article fleshes out a number of things that have been hinted at so far in the ongoing public relations offensive that has followed the official unveiling of the new Air Force Cyber Command (AFCYBER). (link)


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