Space ISAC to Start Operations by Spring 2020

Space ISAC to Start Operations by Spring 2020

ISACs have been existent since the 1990s across various industries like aviation, financial services, and energy. They were established with the aim of collecting, analyzing, and disseminating information about security threats that affect specific sectors

Fremont, CA: The Space Information Sharing and Analysis Center, or Space ISAC, established in April 2019, is set to hold its first meeting with representatives from the government to discuss cybersecurity concerns across the national security, civil, and commercial space sectors. The space organization was set up to share intelligence on cyber threats. The organization is expected to start operations this spring with the launch of an unclassified portal where companies can share and analyze cybersecurity information.

ISACs have been existent since the 1990s across various industries like aviation, financial services, and energy. They were established with the aim of collecting, analyzing, and disseminating information about security threats that affect specific sectors. "There is growing urgency to bring in commercial space companies into the ISAC as massive new constellations get built," said Sam Visner, director of the National Cybersecurity Federally Funded R&D Center at the MITRE Corp.

"We’re seeing the expansion in commercial space and proliferated low Earth orbit (LEO) systems," said Visner. "Given the unprecedented numbers of platforms in these new constellations there has to be a serious discussion about the potential cyber vulnerabilities," he added. According to Frank Backes, chairman of the board for the space ISAC and senior vice president of Kratos, the need for a space focused ISAC was raised by officials from several government agencies and the National Space Council about two years ago. This was due to the importance of space as a critical infrastructure.

Kratos was one of the founding members of the space ISAC, along with ten other companies, including the likes of Booz Allen Hamilton, SES, Lockheed Martin, MITRE, and Parsons Corp. According to ISAC board members, the goal of the organization is to help companies and government agencies prepare and respond to cyber incidents, and disseminate intelligence among member firms. The data sharing and analysis portal is expected to be up and running by late spring. Once the portal is in operation, the Space ISAC will work to recruit and vet potential members. The goal is to sign up as many as 200 companies from the commercial, civil, and national security space sectors.

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