The Pentagon Still Hasn’t Decided Who’s In Charge If America Comes Under Cyberattack

Is it NORTHCOM or CYBERCOM? CYBERCOM or the NSA—or both? So many agencies; so little clarity.

One of the Pentagon’s key missions is to lend a hand—or a drone—during natural disasters or other domestic emergencies. But it is unclear, in the event of of a massive data breach, which element of the Defense Department is in charge of military support, according to Congress’ watchdog agency.

In other words: When there is an Ebola virus epidemic, for example, the assistant secretary of defense for health affairs steps in to help the civilian government. But it’s not clear what military official should organize forces when there is, for instance, a hospital computer virus unleashed by Iran. Continue reading