Cyber Attack Leader: TRANSCOM

Wednesday, February 23, 2011 @ 07:02 PM gHale

U.S. Transportation Command (TRANSCOM) suffers more cyber attacks than any other combatant command, according to its commander, Air Force Gen. Duncan McNabb.

Why is this? Well, because unlike other commands, TRANSCOM relies on unclassified and commercial networks to deliver supplies and passengers all over the world, McNabb said.

In 2010, there were 33,326 “computer network events against TRANSCOM,” McNabb said.

In addition to cyber attacks, TRANSCOM is the target of piracy and other supply-route attacks, a particular vulnerability for operations in Afghanistan, a landlocked country.

Countries north of Afghanistan allow nonlethal cargo to travel through the Northern Distribution Network, while Pakistan allows supplies to arrive in the port of Karachi and then travel on to Afghanistan. However, Pakistan does not allow any uniformed U.S. military presence and therefore contractors must handle shipments.

TRANSCOM conducts 90 percent of its operations by surface transportation, leaving 10 percent carried out by airlift. However, in Afghanistan, 30 percent goes by air, McNabb said. Air transport is 10 times more expensive than surface delivery, he said.

McNabb said he worries about evolving threats and their ability to destabilize the U.S. military’s movement of cargo and forces.

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