Cyber Security and the aerospace and defense industry. Challenges, issues and solutions.

The Aerospace Industries Association has long focused on promoting policies that strengthen the aerospace and defense industry, and convening the important conversations on these same policies and issues with key stakeholders from across the public and private sector.

Last night, as part of National Aerospace Week, AIA co-hosted a Capitol Hill reception with the Senate Aerospace Caucus focusing on cybersecurity challenges in the aerospace and defense industry. Keynote speakers Dr. Tom Kennedy, Chairman and CEO of the Raytheon Company and Vice Chairman of the Aerospace Industries Association, and Ms. Essye Miller, Deputy Chief Information Officer for Cyber Security at the Department of Defense addressed the complicated relationship at the intersection of industry, government, cybersecurity and compliance, and the digital age.

“Cybersecurity is a matter of national security and the safety of our infrastructure and our warfighters,” Kennedy noted.  “The bottom line is that the cyber threat is real and it is here.”

This challenge is further compounded by an increasingly complex cybersecurity environment. While it is generally consumer-facing cyber-breaches like Anthem, Target and Equifax who make the headlines, aerospace and defense organizations are continuously attacked by increasingly sophisticated parties who themselves leverage tools like cloud computing and viruses to increase the scale and impact of their activities. The problem of security our nation’s networks is further complicated by the implications of the Budget Control Act of 2011’s negative impacts of investments in research and development, regulatory climates relating to innovation investments, a widening skills shortage, the need to ramp up investment in cyber tools, an increasingly digital battlefield, and now, a continuing resolution that holds the opportunity to advance our security efforts in peril.

The aerospace and defense industry, including large and small companies from across the supply chain, continue to partner with the Department of Defense and other government organizations to ensure compliance with ongoing regulations. These revisions prevent real world consequences both for international security and domestic politics that could arise from a breach in the aerospace industry’s networks.

Ms. Miller reiterated the importance of these partnerships, saying how at the heart of the solution is awareness of and education on the challenges facing our information security, a point reiterated by Senate Aerospace Caucus Co-Chairs Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Senator Mark Warner (D-Va.)

Dr. Tom Kennedy, Chairman and CEO of the Raytheon Company and Vice Chairman of the Aerospace Industries Association speaks on how cybersecurity is a matter of national security.

 

Senate Aerospace Caucus Co-Chair, Senator Jerry Moran of Kansas, highlights the government’s role in cybersecurity.

 

Senate Aerospace Caucus Co-Chair, Senator Mark Warner of Virginia, highlights the government’s role in cybersecurity.

 

Ms. Essye Miller, Deputy Chief Information Officer for Cyber Security at the Department of Defense speaks to the importance of awareness and education in cybersecurity.
AIA President and CEO Dave Melcher makes introductory remarks at the Senate Aerospace Caucus National Aerospace Week session.