USAF sets up new office to protect weapon systems during cyber attack


The US Air Force (USAF) has established a cyber resiliency office for weapons systems (CROWS) to maintain mission-effective capabilities of weapons during a cyber attack.

Based at Hanscom Air Force Base, CROWS will conduct mission-level cyber risk analysis, integrate cyber into systems engineering, and improve adaptability and agility via modular design and approaches.

CROWS director Dennis Miller said: “The air force’s ability to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace is threatened by increasing competent adversaries in the cyberspace domain.

"The air force’s ability to fly, fight and win in air, space and cyberspace is threatened by increasing competent adversaries in the cyberspace domain."

“The cyber threat is more than just network intrusion or traditional malware, it also affects our weapon systems and presents a clear and present danger to successful mission assurance.”

The office will also focus on the development of a cyber-savvy workforce, increasing assurance in fielded systems in a cost-effective and efficient manner.

In addition to increasing the integration of cyber intelligence, the CROWS enables cyber operation flights and cyber protection teams.

It will focus on integration across the service's communities to acquire, field, operate and sustain increased cyber-resilient weapon systems.

Since weapon systems have real-time constraints and complexities coupled with differing sustainment strategies, same security management practises that are used for traditional information technology systems require tailoring and adaption to be effective and efficient in a weapon system environment, the USAF said in a statement.

The USAF has also formed a senior-level steering group to provide strategic guidance and cross air force integration.