The US Navy is not in a confident position to defend itself from constant cyberattacks from China and other “malign actors” due to outdated and “fragmented” technology, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing quotes from an internal strategy memo circulated by acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly.
According to the document, Navy officers were often prevented from doing simple tasks like file sharing due to worn-down systems, some of which have been in operation for decades, thus failing to a “deliver modern user experience”.
“Our adversaries gain an advantage in cyberspace through guerrilla tactics within our defensive perimeters. Once inside, malign actors steal, destroy and/or modify critical data and information”, the memo reportedly said, warning about the threat this posed to the US military as a whole.
Modly reiterated these worries to the WSJ, insisting that old tech has left America’s sensitive data exposed to hackers from all over the world, causing information to leak “like a sieve”.
This comes almost a year after an internal audit in the Navy concluded that it was “under cyber siege” by hackers from China and some other states, who have allegedly been stealing America’s national secrets for years.
The news is especially surprising considering the fact that Washington has always been anxious about its cybersecurity and sensitive technologies, warning about surveillance activities by Chinese hackers and industrial espionage on behalf of Beijing by such companies as Huawei, thus effectively banging the tech giant from working with American businesses.