Retired Admiral Howard enlightens on the power of cybersecurity

February 11, 2024
1 min read

TLDR:

  • Retired Admiral Michelle Howard held a cyber and national security talk in the Science Center auditorium.
  • Howard shared her personal experiences and insights regarding cyber security.
  • She discussed the past, present, and future of American national security.
  • Howard emphasized the need for a new generation of leaders who understand the evolving world of national security.
  • She touched on critical moments in the history of the cyberworld and assessed the future of global diplomacy.
  • Howard also discussed the characteristics that a true leader should possess.
  • The next day, she participated in a panel discussion on confronting Confederate commemorations in the military.

Retired Admiral Michelle Howard recently held a talk on cyber and national security, sharing her personal experiences and insights in the field. The event was organized by Common Ground, the Division for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and the Department of Computer Science. Howard discussed the history of cyber security, the current geopolitical context, and the future of American national security.

Throughout her decades-long career in the U.S. Navy, Howard achieved many notable accomplishments. She became the first Black woman to command a U.S. Navy combatant ship, played a crucial role in developing Estonia’s National Cybersecurity Strategy Plan, and served as commander of naval forces in Europe and Africa. Following her retirement, Howard taught a course on cybersecurity and international diplomacy at George Washington University.

Howard spoke about her childhood aspirations of joining the Navy and the legal restrictions women faced at that time. She emphasized the importance of doing what is right for the community and shared memorable experiences from her time in the Navy, including the rescue of Captain Phillips from Somali pirates. Howard also discussed the need for a new generation of leaders who can navigate the ever-evolving world of national security.

During the talk, Howard revisited critical moments in cyber history, such as the Stuxnet attack on Iran and Estonia’s 2007 Internet crash. She highlighted the impact of the Stuxnet attack on future cyberattacks, stating that it has become the basis for many complex malware worms used by countries like North Korea. Howard also discussed the Russian invasion of Ukraine and its implications, particularly in relation to China’s ambitions in Taiwan.

In conclusion, Howard discussed the qualities that make a true leader, emphasizing the importance of being truthful and serving as a mentor. The next day, she participated in a panel discussion on confronting Confederate commemorations in the military, where she and other members of The Naming Commission discussed bipartisan approaches to their tasks.

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