Air Force seeks tech to ‘destroy, deny, degrade’ enemy computer systems

zimmytws /

Document outlines the service’s push for offensive cyber capabilities.


The Air Force is planning a push in “developing capabilities associated with cyberspace warfare attack” and wants ideas from security researchers, a contracting notice indicates.

The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center is seeking concept papers for tools “to destroy, deny, degrade, disrupt, deceive, corrupt, or usurp the adversaries ability to use the cyberspace domain,” according to a presolicitation document posted August 22. The public call reflects the Pentagon’s increasing openness about gearing up for offensive cyber operations against enemy computers.

While the document fell short of explicitly mentioning malware or vulnerability analysis tools, it didn’t dismiss them as areas of interest. The Pentagon wants research ideas on denial-of-service attacks, stealth tools, ways to manipulate data, vulnerability assessment-related tools to “intercept, identify, and locate or localize sources of access” in networks and systems, the document said.

Any technology that is implemented is likely to be used in tandem with physical attacks, “resulting in the adversary entering conflicts in a degraded state,” the document notes. Jacobs Technology, BAE Systems Information Technology Inc., and Tecolote Research are playing an advisory role in the procurement process. Proposals will be requested only from selected respondents. The Air Force is accepting proposals through Dec 31.

The call comes after the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency announced it was looking to fund tools and development of infrastructure to lay down the groundwork for offensive cyber operations as part of a program called Plan X.

Hat tip: Threatpost.

Image via zimmytws /