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Space Force to Assess Satellite Operators’ Cybersecurity Via Infrastructure Asset Pre-Approval Program

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The U.S. Space Force has unveiled a program meant to evaluate the cybersecurity of commercial satellite services providers doing business with the Department of Defense, SpaceNews reported Thursday.

The Infrastructure Asset Pre-Approval program seeks to evaluate commercial satellite operators based on their cybersecurity systems and practices to identify those that will be included in a pre-approved list of companies. With this list, suppliers do not need to finish and submit required data about their cyber practices through a questionnaire for each contract proposal.

Our office will begin accepting IA-Pre applications for a limited number of assets to perform assessments,” said Jared Reece, program analyst for the commercial services systems office at Space Systems Command.

The program “will ensure effective safeguards are applied and validated; and weaknesses are mitigated to reduce the cybersecurity risks which could impact DoD missions,” added Reece.

Space Systems Command will conduct on-site cyber compliance assessments using third-party auditors certified by the Space Force Security Controls Assessor and expects pre-trials to begin in June.

In 2020, the Space Force announced the development of the IA-Pre program, which seeks to improve the security posture of commercial satellite communications services that DOD procures.