Critical Infrastructure Security, Threat Intelligence

Total Cyber Command hunt forward missions disclosed for the first time

(Air Force Staff Sgt. Brittany A. Chase/DoD)

Hunt forward missions deployed by the Cyber Command last year were noted by its head Gen. Timothy Haugh to have totaled 22 across 17 countries last year, marking the first disclosure of the number of annual missions since the command's inception six years ago, reports The Record, a news site by cybersecurity firm Recorded Future.

More than 90 malware samples have been collected as part of last year's missions, which were for the first time simultaneously conducted in all of the combatant commands of the Defense Department, said Haugh in a written testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Haugh also said that more missions could be launched this year amid potential foreign interference in the upcoming presidential elections.

"Moscow likely views the upcoming U.S. election as an opportunity for malign influence and has previously targeted elections in the United States and Europe. We assess they will most likely do so again in this year’s elections," Haugh added.

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