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Observations From America’s Most Public Cyber Attacks

The conduct of U.S. military cyber operations has significantly shifted—particularly in the last year. The Department of Defense’s newest cyber strategy, issued in September 2018, emphasizes a “persistent engagement” approach that moves the Department from a reactive state into a more proactive, assertive stance against national security threats in the cyber domain. This is also consistent with the Trump administration’s new classified directive for streamlining the review and approval process for cyber operations. NBC News reported back in January that “the military’s elite cyber force has conducted more operations in the first two years of the Trump administration than it did in eight years under Obama.”

Yet, as the details of these cyber operations are becoming publicly available, I believe there are a set of incorrect assumptions that may be impacting the U.S. government’s ability to produce optimal long-term strategic effects.


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Cindy Martinez

Cindy Martinez

Cindy Martinez has spent her career focusing on cutting edge and complex issues at the forefront of national security. She served 5 years at the Department of Homeland Security where she advised senior leadership on cybersecurity and emerging technology trends. She also negotiated policies and recommended solutions in order to create new Federal initiatives and evaluate the U.S. Government’s effectiveness in areas such as artificial intelligence, offensive cyber operations, vulnerability disclosure, and the national security space domain. She is an analyst with OODA LLC , which publishes and