Pentagon Plans New Command for Online War
Military unit will complement Obama's new civilian office
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted May 29, 2009 7:56 AM CDT
President Obama makes remarks to the media after holding his first Cabinet meeting, Monday, April 20, 2009.   (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)
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(Newser) – The Pentagon is pushing ahead with a new military command devoted to cyberspace as the armed forces ramp up abilities to not only defend against computer attacks but launch them as well, the New York Times reports. The new command will work in concert with a civilian organization, which President Obama will unveil today, devoted to revamping the security of America's computer networks for stock exchanges, air traffic control, and other cyber infrastructure. The White House office will be run by an as-yet unnamed "cyberczar."

Thousands of online attacks are mounted against the US every day—largely by hackers, but sometimes by foreign governments. The Pentagon has not yet presented Obama with a formal version of its cyberwarfare plan, but the president is expected to sign a classified order creating the command in the coming weeks. The new command goes far beyond the actions of the Bush administration, which authorized a few online attacks but never planned for an age of digital warfare.