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Space

Senate Hearing Tackles USSPACECOM Measures to Protect US Satellites

Space systems security

Senate Hearing Tackles USSPACECOM Measures to Protect US Satellites

Lawmakers have questioned the U.S. Space Command‘s position when it comes to protecting the country’s satellites from cyber and electronic attacks from foreign adversaries.

During a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, Sen. Jacky Rosen asked if increasing cyber threats from Russia could affect space operations as Moscow continues its invasion of Ukraine. Gen. James Dickinson, commander of USSPACECOM, said the organization has integrated measures to ensure that satellites are protected.

The command is also working with experts at the U.S. Cyber Command to ensure that systems are continuously monitored, FCW reported.

Sen. Angus King urged Dickinson to ask USCYBERCOM commander and 2022 Wash100 winner Gen. Paul Nakasone to set up a red team to simulate an attack on space systems and see how USSPACECOM will respond. King also suggested that the U.S. Strategic Command support USSPACECOM’s ability to improve cyber resiliency for satellites.

In written testimony, Dickinson said Space Command is also focusing on non-kinetic, reversible solutions like space electronic warfare to give the U.S. superiority in space. He shared that the command is working with the Intelligence Community to develop a testbed that would look at new jam-proof and spoof-resistant waveforms for satellite telemetry, tracking and command.

Dickinson also mentioned that anti-satellite weapons tested by adversarial countries were meant to stop the U.S. from responding to a conflict or crisis. According to Dickinson, the measures tested include cyber and electronic warfare, directed-energy weapons, anti-satellite missiles and space-based weapons.

Sen. Jack Reed, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, pointed out that Russia was able to destroy a satellite during a weapons test in November. He said China will likewise extend its capabilities in space.

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Category: Space

Tags: Angus King FCW Jack Reed Jacky Rosen James Dickinson Paul Nakasone Russia space space systems security US Senate US Space Command