The final version of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2017 would remove the U.S. Cyber Command under the supervision of the U.S. Strategic Command and establish Cybercom as a unified combatant command, C4ISRNet reported Thursday.
Mackenzie Eaglen, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute’s Marilyn Ware Center for Security Studies, said the combatant command designation would provide Cybercom greater coverage in terms of funds, worldwide campaign planning, policy, staff and authorities as well as make cyber a primary mission for the Defense Department, Mark Pomerleau writes.
The compromise FY 2017 defense policy bill that House and Senate conference members approved Tuesday also sets conditions before Cybercom can be allowed to separate from the National Security Agency, according to a report by Joseph Marks for Nextgov.
These include the need for Cybercom to achieve full operational capability by 2018 and certify to congressional armed services panels that Cybercom’s command-and-control systems, weapons and personnel are up to standards, Marks reports.
The compromise defense policy bill would also authorize the DoD secretary to appoint cyber professionals that would ensure the security of Pentagon staff’s personal devices as well as develop standards for the management of “cyber opposition forces” across service branches, according to Nextgov.