Cyber sunk: Hackers find flaws in IT security on new Navy vessel

The Pentagon is moving to fix cybersecurity vulnerabilities on the Navy’s new Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), after computer systems that control the $440 million USS Freedom were hacked by a “red team” of network penetration testers, Bloomberg News reported Wednesday.

An anonymous government official told the agency that the team found “major deficiencies” last year in the computer security on the Lockheed Martin Corp.-built Freedom.

The cybersecurity flaws join pre-existing questions about the $37 billion program to build ships intended to operate inso-called littoral waters, those close to shore.

The Freedom, the first of the new LCS ships to be deployed, sailed to Singapore last month for eight months to test its staffing and logistics operations.

The estimated price to build each vessel has doubled to $440 million, says Bloomberg, and its ability to survive to fight after an attack has been questioned.

Michael Gilmore, the Pentagon’s director of weapons testing, recommended that hacking vulnerabilities “be remediated without delay,” Defense Department spokeswoman Jennifer Elzea told the news agency in an email.

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About the Author
Shaun Waterman

Shaun Waterman

Shaun Waterman is an award-winning reporter for The Washington Times, covering foreign affairs, defense and cybersecurity. He was a senior editor and correspondent for United Press International for nearly a decade, and has covered the Department of Homeland Security since 2003. His reporting on the Sept. 11 Commission and the tortuous process by which some of its recommendations finally became ...

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