The Department of Defense announced today that it will invite vetted hackers to test the department’s cybersecurity under a unique pilot program. The “Hack the Pentagon” initiative is the first cyber bug bounty program in the history of the federal government.
“I am always challenging our people to think outside the five-sided box that is the Pentagon,” said Secretary of Defense Ash Carter. “Inviting responsible hackers to test our cybersecurity certainly meets that test. I am confident this innovative initiative will strengthen our digital defenses and ultimately enhance our national security.”
The “Hack the Pentagon” initiative is being led by the department’s Defense Digital Service (DDS), launched by Secretary Carter last November. The DDS, an arm of the White House’s dynamic cadre of technology experts at the U.S. Digital Service, includes a small team of engineers and data experts meant to improve the department’s technological agility.
“Bringing in the best talent, technology and processes from the private sector not only helps us deliver comprehensive, more secure solutions to the DoD, but it also helps us better protect our country,” said DDS Director and technology entrepreneur Chris Lynch.