Adapting to the (Cyber) Battlefield

Image representing iPhone as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

“The unorthodox and the orthodox give rise to each other, like a beginningless circle–who could exhaust them?” — Sun Tzu (孙子)

The Air Force Cryptologic Systems Division released an RFI looking for cryptographic security on iPhones. I can do that! Can you imagine that? Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, and Airmen using iPhones on the battlefield to wage war? We have already seen the manifestation of cyberwar coupled with kinetic war in Estonia ’07, Ossetia ’08, and right now in Egypt. It is only a matter of time before we see American cyberwarriors using the latest and greatest gadgets to wage cyberwar. To do so, we will need to change the way we equip our troops. It looks to me that the Air Force is finally heading in the right direction by using software on COTS equipment to wage war. Too bad the Army beat the Air Force to the punch and has already awarded Soldiers cash incentives for creating these cybertools. Meanwhile, I look through the RFI and it looks like am ineligible to respond to the RFI put out by my own organization. Way to go, guys. I guess I will go to the Army and see if they will reward me for innovation. Knowing the Air Force, even if there are some good ideas out there the contract for this effort will take two years to finalize, have a two-year source selection, and run five years past deadline and grow 500% in cost overruns.


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