Home' Defence Magazine : Issue 2 2009 Contents • CIOG comprises three main sections:
a development division, an operations
division and a technology division.
• CIOG was created in August 2004
from merging the Office of the Chief
Information Officer and the Information
Systems Division (Corporate Services and
Information Group), along with the areas
that developed and supported enterprise
• The Defence Network Support Agency
comes under the ICT Operations Division,
headed by Rear Admiral Peter Jones.
• The strategic network has a base of more
than 92,000 desktops, a user community
of more than 100,000 (in the Restricted
domain) and is the third largest
communications network in Australia,
following the commercial networks of
Telstra and Optus.
• The Defence network handles
approximately 1.3 million incoming
legitimate emails per week and a further
800,000 outgoing. This does not include
emails sent to and from Defence users
within the DRN or DSN environments.
• Defence Network Support Agency also
handles the DREAMS system (Defence
Remote Electronic Access Mobility
System). Approximately 5600 DREAMS
tokens have been issued.
“We also try to give people as much access
to the Internet as we can, commensurate with
Defence’s operational and business priorities and
the amount of capacity we physically have at any
one time. We are very conscious that the Internet
is a central medium to all sorts of capabilities
professional and social networking, keeping
in contact with family and friends, research for
business or personal reasons, education and
training and the like.
“Take distance education for example. The
ability for our people to take advantage of distance
learning packages offered by various institutions is
an important part of enabling people to expand and
improve their education. Unfortunately some of the
websites operated by some of these institutions
can act as uncontrolled chat rooms or introduce
viruses and the like to our system, so we actively
block those sites we consider a risk to the integrity
of our networks.
“Generally we, like every other large
organisation, we have to walk this little tightrope
between giving people as much access as possible
and protecting the network.”
Also protecting the health of the network are
a variety of filters and applications which clean out
approximately two million spam emails, or about
80 per cent of email traffic that hits the Defence
gateway, per day.
CDRE Boyce says a lot of effort goes into
protecting the Defence network and occasionally
a malicious attachment gets through, but usually
because an individual has opened something they
“Just about everyone has a home email
account and everyone understands what the
dangers are because it happens to them at home.
And so everyone brings that with them to work and
takes what they learn at work back home I think as
well,” CDRE Boyce said.
“And so the vast majority of people on the
network do the right thing and they’re not silly.
Sometimes people can get caught out – you’re just
not thinking and you might click on something. But
we have procedures and processes in place to
identify, contain and cleanse all those sorts of things.”
Down the track, CDRE Boyce is also optimistic
about technologies that will assist the Defence
network and its users and says Defence is
not about to isolate itself from the wider ICT
Directing traffic in this regard is Defence’s
Chief Technology Officer Matt Yannopoulos, whose
focus is on the Internet, where increased services
will provide much greater benefits to our work and
“Increasingly, we will be able to offer high
quality internet services to the ADO in both the
fixed and deployed environments,” Matt said.
“These tools will enable sailors, soldiers and
airmen and women to manage their private affairs
such as banking, e-business/commerce and keep in
contact with family and friends.”
Matt said options exist to do this securely or
via Internet companies such as Facebook, Twitter
and MySpace, but ultimately how much access,
in terms of time, will be a matter for Defence
leadership to decide.
“Our aim in CIO Group will be to make the
technology capable of meeting whatever business
need is desired.
“Clearly, managing information risk and
ensuring that operational information stays inside
Defence-managed networks is a challenge for
ICT groups, but increasingly, innovative ways of
doing that will emerge, so that the user – be they
APS, military or family/friend – will not need to
be challenged by multiple separate networks and
separate access devices,” Matt said.
CDRE Boyce is like-minded when it comes to
technology making our lives simpler, which extends
to our home and work-lives.
“There are more services being delivered
on converged systems. And so at home, you’ll
be getting your phone through your internet
connections, you’ll probably get your TV down track
through your internet. You’ll be getting whatever
else you’re trying to get through the internet,”
CDRE Boyce said.
“Really, you want to get to a stage where
there’s just one fibre into your house instead of
three or four, or one satellite link depending on
where you are.
“Defence is no different.”
Commander of Defence Strategic Communications Commodore Roger Boyce
Increasingly, we will be able to offer high quality internet services
to the ADO in both the fixed and deployed environments
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