National Security in a Digital World

August 2021 No Comments

Speaker(s): Gordon, S. (Former Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence)

Date: 31 August 2021

Speaker Session Summary

SMA hosted a speaker session with the Honorable Sue Gordon (Former Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence) as part of its SMA INSS/PRISM Speaker Series.

The vast amount of current and emerging technologies allows any individual or governing body to maximize the impact of information operations. The Honorable Sue Gordon commented that there is more technology available to the DoD than it can reasonably use. This amount of modern communication technology allows users to share information and data much faster than ever before. The amount and speed at which data is created generates new challenges for data analysts, breaks down long-standing physical boundaries between populations, and creates a new geopolitical competition focused on the collection of data—especially economic data. Data competition is a major component of the geopolitical competition between China and the US. Additionally, non-great power states and violent extremist organizations (VEOs) also have the capability to threaten the US through digital means.

She added that the changing of personnel for DoD institutions, which creates a void of institutional experience, is a potential weakness of the US bureaucratic system. As technology continues to advance at a rapid pace, the DoD must train its leaders to have a more technical skillset. This training should include the development of AI and best practices for using it as a decision-making tool. Ms. Gordon emphasized that the US must support its identity as the leader of the free world and not abandon traditional US values that have made it a global ideological leader since WWII. 

Speaker Session Recording

This recording will be posted over the weekend (by 12 September 2021).

Briefing Materials


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