Are you tired of having to change all your passwords frequently? So is the director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, which is trying to come up with a solution to the annoying problem.
Since its inception in the mid-20th century, DARPA has helped generate many of the capabilities that transformed the U.S. military and in some cases, the civilian world, including stealth tech, precision weapons, the internet and GPS, to name just a few.
At the annual DefenseTalks conference Thursday hosted by DefenseScoop, DARPA chief Stefanie Tompkins was asked to identify some of the potentially transformational technologies that her program managers are working on today.
One of those tech areas is “fundamentally secure software and hardware,” she noted.
“Everyone here I’m sure loves the experience of changing your password every three months and being told you can’t write it down and every password has to be different. And so of course we all violate those rules because … we have no way to keep up,” Tompkins said. “So, imagine a world in which you just didn’t have to do that, and all … software and systems and devices were inherently secure. [There are] lots of ways to do that both algorithmically and in hardware as well. And we’re working on multiple ways to do that.”
Another “problem area” highlighted by Tompkins that DARPA is pursuing breakthroughs for is supply chains. The push comes as U.S. military leaders are worried that the flow of critical items to its troops could be cut off in a potential war with China across long distances in the Indo-Pacific, given Beijing’s long-range, precision weapons and other so-called anti-access, area-denial tools.
“One [capability that DARPA is pursuing] is making what you need, where you need it. And that includes medicine, food, water, energetic materials — just about anything — so that you can at least free yourself up from some of the significant logistical burdens that we face today,” Tompkins told DefenseScoop.