Welcome!

Microsoft Cloud Authors: Janakiram MSV, Pat Romanski, Steven Mandel, John Basso, Liz McMillan

Blog Feed Post

Anti-Access Area-Denial (A2AD) in Military Domains and in Cyberspace

By

220px-B-2_leading_Valiant_ShieldSince 9/11, the US has invested heavily in high-end technologies to counter military threats. We have all been amazed at some of the breakthroughs that have been made. Eleven years of fighting on multiple battlefields has given us the opportunity to test these new technologies in places and ways that were never possible before. Throughout these many campaigns however, we have had the luxury of constant, assured access to cyberspace. Sure – there was never enough bandwidth for data-thirsty military operations, but we were basically un-contested in the cyberspace domain throughout our wars and other military activities. Whatever we wanted to do, cybersapce was more or less always usable. As we wind down and try to move these bandwidth-intensive technologies and advancements to counter other potential adversaries, we should understand that owning the cyberspace domain will not always be possible. Our dependency on this connectivity might just be our Achilles heel.

Anti-Access Area-Denial or A2AD is just a fancy acronym for an old military priority: getting control of the area you are going to operate in (air, sea, cyberspace, etc.) and making sure you deny that area to your adversary. DoD’s entire Air-Sea Battle is an effort to identify how we will defeat our adversaries A2AD capabilities such as missiles, mines, or cyber attacks. Whether you are operating from a submarine or driving an unmanned vehicle, the domains – air, land, sea, undersea, space – are highly dependent on the cyberspace. And cyberspace is both an exponential force multiplier AND a critical vulnerability.

We can’t train without it and we can’t fight without it. But Cyberspace for DoD (defined as our interconnected information technology) has vulnerabilities. Professionals realize with any vulnerability, there are opportunities. But to take advantage of the opportunity we need clear, open analysis of the vulnerability and ways to mitigate them.

The following reviews some gaps and key emerging technologies that will help reduce critical shortfalls:

  • We must have a back up plan – the ability to operate in limited, degraded bandwidth environments. Years ago when I worked at one of DoD’s teleports, we scoffed at the idea of using HF to communicate; it was just too small a pipe for any meaningful communications. Now we are reexamining how HF might play in an A2AD environment.
    • The Navy is using a program called the Battle Force Tactical Network (BFTN) to develop a capability to use the HF and UHF radio spectrum to provide line of sight and beyond line of sight network capability in a SATCOM deprived scenario. In operational exercises with our allies, we are testing HFIP and Sub-Net Relay and experiencing data rates of 120kbps and 1.92Mbps, respectively. Not enough to do high-end imagery, for sure! But enough to keep us connected by chat, email and share a common operational picture, with some web-replications and a limited amount of VoIP and video. This isn’t really new technology; we have had these capabilities for a long time (although there are some neat new-tech enablers that are making this less painful than it used to be). The real interesting part about this is that we are actually testing it and exercising it with our allies again.

 

  • Backup plans also apply to infrastructure and data. This calls for well engineered solutions to fast data storage and access and recovery capabilities like those provided by Cleversafe. There are many other gaps that must be addressed to form holistic engineering solutions to backup and security needs for the enterprise. We will save those for a future post since there are so many elements to review, but it is important for any in industry to understand that the military needs your continued innovation in this area.

 

  • Understanding the state of the enterprise is so difficult that DoD has spent millions of dollars and years of effort and can only marginally show what networks are RED/GREEN/YELLOW in a way that is useful to the commander.
    • Tools are needed that show the health and status of these architectures and that will plug and play with existing networks.
    • Tools are needed that can show how these networks are connected in an operational sense. For example, if a network is down (RED), does it impact an existing mission? This is not easy, since it connects network status tools to complex OPLANS and changing Task Force designations.

 

  • The data sets are so large and complex it’s impossible to pull out critical insights with the current architecture. Tools that enable multilayered analysis will be of value, especially when using some of the limited bandwidth techniques discussed above. Any plan that depends on big-bandwidth to port huge amounts of data back to a common analysis center is fraught with problems in an A2AD scenario.
    • I like the technologies used by Thetus Corporation. They have a product called Savanna, which provides search, visualization, discovery, analytic and production tools. It also organizes the data in meaningful ways. I think that a test of how this could be distributed and synchronized across a tactical network with coalition or OGO would provide some interesting results. See a video of this at http://www.screencast.com/t/Ls0vo62IIM. To be able to do this type of analysis during an A2AD environment, we must practice it first and establish clear guidelines on how the analysis is performed when the bandwidth is degraded.
    • Other key technologies which can help address this need include those from MarkLogic, Cloudera, Cleversafe, and Terracotta.

 

  • “Pervasive Interoperability” will be a cornerstone to all future military campaigns. It’s hard to picture many scenarios where DoD would operate alone. Visualization tools are needed that clearly display a meaning across a coalition that includes numerous partners – including other Governmental organizations (OGO) or other nations.

 

  • Speed of decision and speed of action is also a key requirement in modern military campaigns. This means IT systems must be engineered to be fast and responsive. Expect much more use of modern in-memory and advanced caching solutions. This is also a strong point for Terracotta.

As we move forces and capabilities to new areas of operation, we need to view each one with the lens of “how will it work in a contested cyberspace”. Each new technology insertion should demand a complimentary review of how it works in A2AD environments. The smart technologist will be able to answer that question as new capabilities are rolled out. We cannot blindly assume the cyberspace will be ours for future campaigns.

Do you have technologies you believe can address key mission needs of the DoD? If so, let us know about them here.  Are you looking for new technologies to help architect solutions to these mission needs? Search for the latest technology here.  We also link to many of these tech leaders below and at CTOlabs.com

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Bob Gourley

Bob Gourley writes on enterprise IT. He is a founder and partner at Cognitio Corp and publsher of CTOvision.com

@ThingsExpo Stories
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
SYS-CON Events announced today Telecom Reseller has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Telecom Reseller reports on Unified Communications, UCaaS, BPaaS for enterprise and SMBs. They report extensively on both customer premises based solutions such as IP-PBX as well as cloud based and hosted platforms.
For basic one-to-one voice or video calling solutions, WebRTC has proven to be a very powerful technology. Although WebRTC’s core functionality is to provide secure, real-time p2p media streaming, leveraging native platform features and server-side components brings up new communication capabilities for web and native mobile applications, allowing for advanced multi-user use cases such as video broadcasting, conferencing, and media recording.
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, will discuss the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
Pulzze Systems was happy to participate in such a premier event and thankful to be receiving the winning investment and global network support from G-Startup Worldwide. It is an exciting time for Pulzze to showcase the effectiveness of innovative technologies and enable them to make the world smarter and better. The reputable contest is held to identify promising startups around the globe that are assured to change the world through their innovative products and disruptive technologies. There w...
Is the ongoing quest for agility in the data center forcing you to evaluate how to be a part of infrastructure automation efforts? As organizations evolve toward bimodal IT operations, they are embracing new service delivery models and leveraging virtualization to increase infrastructure agility. Therefore, the network must evolve in parallel to become equally agile. Read this essential piece of Gartner research for recommendations on achieving greater agility.
Akana has announced the availability of version 8 of its API Management solution. The Akana Platform provides an end-to-end API Management solution for designing, implementing, securing, managing, monitoring, and publishing APIs. It is available as a SaaS platform, on-premises, and as a hybrid deployment. Version 8 introduces a lot of new functionality, all aimed at offering customers the richest API Management capabilities in a way that is easier than ever for API and app developers to use.
DevOps at Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long dev...
Personalization has long been the holy grail of marketing. Simply stated, communicate the most relevant offer to the right person and you will increase sales. To achieve this, you must understand the individual. Consequently, digital marketers developed many ways to gather and leverage customer information to deliver targeted experiences. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lou Casal, Founder and Principal Consultant at Practicala, discussed how the Internet of Things (IoT) has accelerated our abil...
SYS-CON Events announced today that 910Telecom will exhibit at the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Housed in the classic Denver Gas & Electric Building, 910 15th St., 910Telecom is a carrier-neutral telecom hotel located in the heart of Denver. Adjacent to CenturyLink, AT&T, and Denver Main, 910Telecom offers connectivity to all major carriers, Internet service providers, Internet backbones and ...
With so much going on in this space you could be forgiven for thinking you were always working with yesterday’s technologies. So much change, so quickly. What do you do if you have to build a solution from the ground up that is expected to live in the field for at least 5-10 years? This is the challenge we faced when we looked to refresh our existing 10-year-old custom hardware stack to measure the fullness of trash cans and compactors.
The emerging Internet of Everything creates tremendous new opportunities for customer engagement and business model innovation. However, enterprises must overcome a number of critical challenges to bring these new solutions to market. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Martin, CTO/CIO at nfrastructure, outlined these key challenges and recommended approaches for overcoming them to achieve speed and agility in the design, development and implementation of Internet of Everything solutions wi...
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Venafi, the Immune System for the Internet™ and the leading provider of Next Generation Trust Protection, will exhibit at @DevOpsSummit at 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Venafi is the Immune System for the Internet™ that protects the foundation of all cybersecurity – cryptographic keys and digital certificates – so they can’t be misused by bad guys in attacks...
Smart Cities are here to stay, but for their promise to be delivered, the data they produce must not be put in new siloes. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mathias Herberts, Co-founder and CTO of Cityzen Data, will deep dive into best practices that will ensure a successful smart city journey.
In today's uber-connected, consumer-centric, cloud-enabled, insights-driven, multi-device, global world, the focus of solutions has shifted from the product that is sold to the person who is buying the product or service. Enterprises have rebranded their business around the consumers of their products. The buyer is the person and the focus is not on the offering. The person is connected through multiple devices, wearables, at home, on the road, and in multiple locations, sometimes simultaneously...
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
Amazon has gradually rolled out parts of its IoT offerings in the last year, but these are just the tip of the iceberg. In addition to optimizing their back-end AWS offerings, Amazon is laying the ground work to be a major force in IoT – especially in the connected home and office. Amazon is extending its reach by building on its dominant Cloud IoT platform, its Dash Button strategy, recently announced Replenishment Services, the Echo/Alexa voice recognition control platform, the 6-7 strategic...
Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is expected in the amount of information being processed, managed, analyzed, and acted upon by enterprise IT. This amazing is not part of some distant future - it is happening today. One report shows a 650% increase in enterprise data by 2020. Other estimates are even higher....