Pentagon seeking hackers to stress-test computer systems

WASHINGTON -- The Pentagon is looking for a few good computer hackers.

Screened high-tech specialists will be brought in to try to breach the Defence Department's public Internet pages in a pilot program aimed at finding and fixing cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

See Full Article

Defence officials laid out the broad outlines of the plan Wednesday, but had few details on how it will work, what Pentagon systems would be tested and how the hackers would be compensated.

Called "Hack the Pentagon," the program will begin next month. Department officials and lawyers still must work through a number of legal issues involving the authorization of so-called "white-hat hackers" to breach active Pentagon websites.

Defence Secretary Ash Carter said he will be "inviting responsible hackers to test our cybersecurity," adding that he believes the program will "strengthen our digital defences and ultimately enhance our national security."

Defence Department systems get probed and attacked millions of times a day, officials say.

The new program is being led by the Defence Digital Service, which was created by Carter last November.

According to the Pentagon, it is the first time the federal government has undertaken a program with outsiders attempting to breach the networks. Large companies have done similar things.

Officials said the pilot program will involve public networks or websites that do not have any sensitive information or personal employee data on them.

It is being called a "bounty" program. But it's unclear if the hackers will be paid a flat fee or based on their achievements -- or if they'll only be offered the glory and notoriety of breaching the world's greatest military's systems.



Advertisements

Latest Tech & Science News

  • New Zealand test rocket makes it to space but not to orbit

    Tech & Science CTV News
    WELLINGTON, New Zealand - California-based company Rocket Lab said Thursday it had launched a test rocket into space from its New Zealand launch pad, although the rocket didn't reach orbit as hoped. The company said its Electron rocket lifted off at 4:20 p.m. Source
  • Chinese champion begins rematch against computer in ancient game of Go

    Tech & Science CTV News
    WUZHEN, China - China's top player of the ancient board game of go began a second game against a computer Thursday in a competition authorities limited the Chinese public's ability to see. Google's AlphaGo program defeated 19-year-old prodigy Ke Jie on Tuesday in the first of three games they are due to play this week at a forum on artificial intelligence in this town west of Shanghai. Source
  • Computer wins rematch against Chinese champion in ancient game of Go

    Tech & Science CTV News
    WUZHEN, China -- A computer beat China's top player of go, one of the last games machines have yet to master, for a second time Thursday in a competition authorities limited the Chinese public's ability to see. Source
  • Surge in value for Bitcoin cryptocurrency

    Tech & Science CTV News
    The value of the Bitcoin, the internet's most widely used virtual currency, has more than doubled since the beginning of 2017, recently passing the symbolic $2,000 mark and setting a new record. While the currency is becoming more widely used and accepted, it is still often associated with the darker side of the internet. Source
  • Snowy plover chick hatches on Oregon beach for first time since 1960s

    Tech & Science CTV News
    PORTLAND, Ore. -- A Western snowy plover chick that hatched on an Oregon beach this spring is the first of its species to emerge successfully in that area in more than 50 years and provides hope that a management plan for the federally threatened species is working, wildlife officials said Wednesday. Source
  • Endangered salamanders put quarry on hold as residents fight against project

    Tech & Science CTV News
    A group of Ontario residents trying to ward off the development of a new quarry in their community say they have found two endangered salamanders that they hope will convince authorities to put an end to the project. Source
  • Temperatures to 'teeter-totter' across Canada this summer

    Tech & Science CBC News
    The lack of a clear El Niño or La Niña out in the Pacific Ocean means weather patterns across much of Canada are likely to remain changeable and active for much of the summer, top meteorologists are forecasting. Source
  • Report on failed European Mars lander concludes brief, unexpected spin to blame

    Tech & Science CBC News
    An independent report has concluded that Europe's Schiaparelli probe crash-landed on Mars last year because its systems couldn't cope with a brief, wild rotation during its descent. The report commissioned by the European Space Agency says the sudden spin — lasting only one second — overloaded the probe's sensors, making it think it had already reached the ground. Source
  • Endangered salamanders put quarry on hold as Ontario town battles against project

    Tech & Science CBC News
    A group of Ontario residents trying to ward off the development of a new quarry in their community say they have found two endangered salamanders that they hope will convince authorities to put an end to the project. Source
  • Google's AI wins Go match in China, but blocks online broadcast

    Tech & Science CBC News
    ?Internet users outside China watched a computer defeat its national go champion, but few Chinese web surfers could see it. Censors blocked access to Tuesday's online broadcast by Google, which organized the game in a town west of Shanghai during a forum on artificial intelligence. Source