They have been an independent entity around the Pentagon for less than five years, taking on a variety of complex technical issues for different groups in the Department of Defense. Their organizational structure is very similar to a Silicon Valley start-up and they refer to themselves as “The Swat Team of Nerds”.
The nerd boss is Daniel Bardenstein, a DoD digital services expert and leader of Hack the Pentagon.
“We are a small group of technologists who are under the Office of the Secretary of Defense,” Bardenstein said. Federal Monthly Insights: Security based on hackers. “So we’re employees of DoD, not another contractor.”
Bardenstein is proud of the “unique fusion” of its team of experience from the private sector to career government civilians, complemented by military people, who periodically offer their assigned services.
Part of its role as DoD is ethical hacking and cybersecurity. In addition, they work to detect and protect U.S. assets from opposing drones and were heavily involved in the COVID-19 response, among other things, providing cybersecurity to Operation Warp Speed.
“We do a lot of advice on technology best practices; we’ll do discovery sprints with various DoD partners to help understand the root type of a problem, whether it’s technologically, organizationally, or culturally. And then provide again. our findings to both DoD’s leadership and the partner group we’re working with, ”Bardenstein said. Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
All the while, the SWAT of Nerds team stays “lean and fast.” The high-priced Operation Warp Speed effort involved, at the top of the list, cybersecurity issues.
“We will collaborate, along with NSA, and work closely with many other government cybersecurity agencies, to protect the entire end-to-end process of vaccine, research and development, clinical trials, distribution and manufacturing. Bardenstein said.
The “Hack the Pentagon” bug reward program has been run more than 30 times, where the vast community of white-hat hackers lends a hand.
“One of our core philosophies and missions in the field of cybersecurity is not only to improve cybersecurity around DoD and the government and its systems, but also to change the culture around its vision of cybersecurity and how to interact with she, ”Bardenstein said.
“The ‘Hack the Pentagon’ program, which has been running for five years, brought the first error reward to the U.S. government, where we basically used hackers from around the world and pointed out various DoD assets for them to enter and they responsibly revealed what they found and were compensated financially. “