President Donald Trump and his administration have turned a blind-eye to cybersecurity, despite repeated warnings by intelligence and the Pentagon that the United States should arm itself against such attacks. Now, Trump is ignoring the U.S. Navy's plea for more resources.
According to TIME, a report to the Secretary of the Navy warned that the services is preparing for the "wrong war." When it comes to bombs, ships, and tanks, the United States is unmatched. But poorer countries are now able to bring the U.S. to its knees with mere computer code.
“We find the Department of the Navy preparing to win some future kinetic battle, while it is losing the current global, counter-force, counter-value, cyber war,” a March report explained.
This week, however, Trump sought to buy another big ship for the Navy instead of funding their concerns. Trump wants to save a 21-year-old nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, the USS Harry S. Truman. The move will cost the Navy more than $20 billion over the next two decades. That money was slated to go to unmanned vessels and advanced technologies instead.
In May 2018, Trump eliminated the position of the White House Cybersecurity Coordinator. When he first came into office, Trump signed a cybersecurity executive order that requires that all federal agencies adopt the Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity.
In Trump's 2019 budget, he cut funding to research new cybersecurity threats and moved funding from the Department of Homeland Security to focus more on the Department of Energy, Department of Veterans Affairs and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
“In prior eras, for good or ill, navies shifted their definition from wood to steel to wing, or from sail to steam and beyond,” the March report said.
“This time technology, not the naval service, or its opponents, have imposed a definition of what navies will be for the rest of the 21st Century,” it continued. “Navies must become information enterprises who happen to operate on, over, under, and from the sea; a vast difference from a 355 ship mindset.”