Pentagon policy calls for greater anti-counterfeiting focus

Aerial photo of PentagonThe Pentagon is calling on heads of defense units to cut the risk of sourcing counterfeit products in a new directive.

Senior Department of Defense (DoD) officials now view fake parts as a potentially major threat to US military might and are seeking to protect the vulnerability through tighter sourcing policies.

Last month the DoD added a three step anti-counterfeiting strategy to its written policies. Heads of defense units must design strategies to identify counterfeit components, cut the likelihood of sourcing them, and mitigate the consequences in case any are used in DoD equipment.

The policy document is light on details of how to achieve these goals, but does mandate the use of item unique identification for national level traceability of critical components. DoD first called for a track-and-trace system back in 2008.

In a separate action, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is to meet with companies interested in participating in its Vetting Commodity IT Software and Firmware agenda. At the December 12 meeting DARPA will discuss plans to tighten software security.

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