Air Force

January 10, 2014

AFNet PII breaches still concern

afnet1
PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — More than one month after Air Force Space Command’s implementation of lock-out procedures for individuals found to have inappropriately transmitted Personally Identifiable Information, PII breaches still remain a significant issue.

While the average number of daily incidences of PII breaches have decreased there is still a lot of work to be done to prevent future PII incidents, said Gen. William L. Shelton, the commander of Air Force Space Command.

“We’ve all got to work harder to eliminate PII violations,” Shelton said. “In November more than 5,000 individuals were affected by a single PII breach. PII that is not properly protected becomes vulnerable to interception by an adversary. That creates the risk of the information being used to target individual users to gain their credentials and potentially gain access to our networks. From an individual perspective, it can also lead to identity theft. We can’t stand the network or the personal consequences, so we must stop PII breaches on the AFNet (Air Force Network).”

During the six month period from May through October the Air Force averaged approximately 3.3 reports affecting 1,935 members per day. Since launching the new policy and process, that average has dropped to approximately 2.7 reports affecting 991 members per day.

“The most common violations we are seeing are people transmitting personnel rosters from .mil to .com addresses and vice versa,” said Col. Douglas Coppinger, the 67th Cyberspace Wing vice commander, the wing whose mission encompasses the detection of PII breaches. “While quite often these breaches are not of malicious intent, we need to better educate our Airmen on the protection of this type of information.”

One tool available for protecting information is provided by the Software Protection Initiative established by the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics in December 2001. The SPI has the mission of marginalizing a threat actor’s ability to steal and exploit critical Department of Defense intellectual property found in application software.

Users have multiple tools at their disposal to protect PII if encrypting e-mail is not feasible, but electronic transmission of sensitive PII is operationally required. Users can leverage approved DOD file exchange services through AMRDEC SAFE, file encryption wizards, or simply use Microsoft Office password protection.

“Once personnel understand what information can be sent home and how to protect it, this provides Airmen clear lanes in the road they can follow, and provides commanders the framework to properly address infractions of those set rules,” Coppinger said.

afnet2

Continuing force-wide education on the protection of electronic information is a top priority for AFSPC and those responsible for protecting the AFNet.

“We are working with leaders across the Air Force to educate and address PII breaches,” said Maj. Gen. James K. McLaughlin, the 24th Air Force commander. “As the technology we use to protect the Air Force Network improves, we have gained better visibility of information crossing through and leaving the network. As a matter of fact, we already detect 100 percent of all pieces of PII crossing through the AFNet. What we’re doing now is making a concerted effort to hold people accountable, helping to ensure all AFNet users are handling this important information properly.”

The AFSPC lock-out procedures were put in place based upon AFSPC’s responsibility to operate and defend the AFNet and each individual user’s responsibilities that comes with access to the network. AFMAN 33-152, User Responsibilities and Guidance for Information Systems, requires special handling for PII data.

AFNet users should contact their unit Privacy Manager as well as refer to Air Force Instruction 33-332, The Air Force Privacy and Civil Liberties Program, for additional information on safeguarding PII.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr.

First sergeant provides health, welfare for warriors

U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr. Master Sgt. Phelipe Salinas speaks to his athletes during the 2014 Warrior Games at the Garry Berry Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colo., Oct. 2. Salinas is the first sergean...
 
 

Safeguarding, re-evaluating your digital footprint

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Social media is a great resource for Airmen and their families to share information and stay connected to relatives at home and abroad. Although many depend on these wonderful tools, recent events have encouraged us to re-evaluate our digital footprint to ensure our personal and professional information is protected from online...
 
 

October is Energy Action Month: ‘I am Air Force Energy’

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — Summer has come to a close, and we’re all looking forward to more tolerable temperatures in the coming weeks. Even better news — this means your power bill is likely to go down. But if you think you pay a lot for energy, imagine paying Nellis’ bill of approximately $1 million...
 

 

Taming ‘tyranny of urgent’

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — Many Airmen lead incredibly busy lives, full of unfinished tasks that we often wish we had more hours in the day to fit it all in, and in our professional lives, budgets remain tight, the Air Force is shrinking, and we are challenged to do more with less. Yet...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis

Armory: A home for weapons

U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis Senior Airman Jaime Romo, 99th Security Forces Squadron armorer, puts a M-240 rifle away after clearing the weapon at the 99th SFS armory at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo

Nellis Open House brings history to life

U.S. Air Force photo The AT-6 Texan, which was originally flown in 1935 and flown here in the 1940s, will be one of many aircraft at the Nellis Air Force Base Open House on Nov. 8 and 9. It is a single-engine advanced trainer a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin