Understanding cyber is another beachhead a country must defend, Germany launched a cyber command, with a status equal to that of the army, navy and air force.
The goal is the shield the country’s IT and weapons systems from attack.
It is no secret military experts say wars of the future will start with cyber attacks against critical infrastructure and networks, extensive online espionage and sabotage.
The Bundeswehr’s new Cyber and Information Space (CIR) Command, based in the former West German capital of Bonn, will start off with 260 IT specialists but grow to 13,500 military and civilian personnel by July.
With the new digital force, Germany is taking a leading role among NATO allies, its new commander, Lieutenant General Ludwig Leinhos said in a published report.
Leinhos said the main tasks would be to operate and protect the military’s own IT infrastructure and computer-assisted weapons systems, as well as surveillance of online threats.
He said the center would also develop and war-game offensive capabilities because “in order to be able to defend yourself, you have to know the options for attack.”
However, any full-scale cyber attacks abroad would have to be approved by the German parliament, just like any other military mission.