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'Hack The Pentagon' Will Examine Weakness, Vulnerabilities

WASHINGTON (WJZ)—It's a prize target for a cyber-attack.

Now the Pentagon is asking hackers to give it a try.

Alex DeMetrick reports, a challenge called "Hack the Pentagon" will look for strengths and weakness.

The 9-11 attack on the Pentagon was mass murder on a high priority target.

And even after the destruction was repaired, it remains a target under daily attack, from hackers looking for ways into the military's computer networks.

So the Pentagon will try something it hasn't done before, asking hackers to "come and test the DOD systems and networks and see if there are any weaknesses or vulnerabilities," says Marcus Rauschecke.

Rauschecker, who's  with the University of Maryland's Center for Health and Homeland Security, specializes in cyber security.

"We've seen this in the private sector for many years, where companies will hire outsiders to test their systems," he says.

Only those systems aren't designed to protect the United States and its people from cyber-attacks that could reveal military secrets, weapons systems, and cripple communication networks.

Finding the weak points before someone else does is the whole point of the "Hack the Pentagon" challenge.

Interested hackers must be U.S citizens and clear a Defense Department background check that's a big difference from the unauthorized hacking that goes on every day.

"All of these systems are under constant threat, so everyone on every level needs to be vigilant and do everything they can to protect their systems," said Rauschecker.

Those selected to hack the Pentagon will be given a date next month to fund a way into the Defense Department's networks.

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