Through its White House, the US has launched its new space framework that they hope will promote cybersecurity of their space systems. The framework, Space Policy Directive (SPD) 5, is the first initiative by the US government to secure its space systems from cybercrimes. The policy details practices that the agencies and companies in the US can adhere to and secure their information, although they have the right break away from the stipulated regulations.
One of the US senior administrators explained that the SPD is an initial initiative that articulates the cybersecurity regulations that are going to lead and lay grounds for the US to start dealing with the notorious cybercriminals.
Most of the regulations in this framework are already in action in other industries, and the US hopes that the space industry can implement those that suit their systems. Some of the regulations include end-to-end encryption of the data moving between satellites and their control centers, protection of communications through the installation of authentication features, and the wrapping of the terrestrial space centers with protection mechanisms.
The policy states that the space systems must install detection systems for their space control centers when they are engineering the centers’ development. The policy also explains that the centers must have advanced scanners for all the external hardware they bring into their command and controls to avoid their systems’ scrambling.
The policy is but a consideration for the space industry if they lack the knowledge to secure their systems. The senior administrator stated that they don’t intend to make the policy adherence a requisite through licensing of the space resources since the policy will impede the growth of the startups that cannot afford the cybersecurity programs’ cost. Additionally, it is not appropriate to force the space agencies and companies to adhere to the policy considering its insufficiency in the ever-growing space industry and firms’ desire to boss their cybersecurity plans.
The cybersecurity policy is a generalized framework that educates the firms to prepare for the possibility of hacking and other cyber threats. Additionally, this policy is insufficient for the terrestrial facilities and has a weak ground to command the space industry. The essence of the policy is to lay a cybersecurity foundation for the space industry.
Nevertheless, the policy demonstrates its usefulness after introducing the Space Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC) to provide details on the impending space cybersecurity threats and crimes.
To conclude, the proponents of this policy are hopeful that agencies like the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency of the DHS can share the details of the ongoing cyber threats and attacks with the space industry for awareness and proper preparation. The previous space policy directives informed the correct decision-making processes in space traffic management, creating the Space Force and other amendments in the commercial space operations.