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Navy Department’s Tom Sasala: System Interoperability Key to Joint C2 Platform Operations

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Tom Sasala, chief data officer of the Department of the Navy, said the Department of Defense (DOD) must incentivize industry efforts to drive system interoperability for the Joint All-Domain Command and Control (JADC2) infrastructure, C4ISRnet reported Wednesday.

Sasala said at a recent industry event that service branch leaders are working to identify JADC2 systems that must be prioritized for interoperability. He noted that he previously recommended looking into operational nodes to identify issues in interoperability or communication gaps.

According to Sasala, driving interoperability through modern web technologies is a challenge for legacy systems. He cited cultural changes and workforce skills as key factors for achieving “true interoperability.”

“We pay a vendor to build a system and we pay a different vendor to build a different system,” said Sasala. “There’s not a whole lot of incentive right now for those two vendors to talk to each other."

Sasala noted that polymorphic encryption could also be a feasible approach to ensuring data security for the JADC2 platform. Zero trust concepts must also be “fully embraced” for network security, he added.

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