The Pentagon pays hackers to help test the key components of their internal systems for vulnerabilities. Hackers tend to find weaknesses faster than coders and the Pentagon is taking advantage of this.
A pilot program was introduced last month from the Pentagon’s Defense Digital Services. About 80 security researchers were let into a simulation and the project was so important that new Defense Secretary James Mattis was briefed about it on the first day he was on the job.
Many within the Pentagon didn’t expect much to turn up or at least for it not to happen very fast. However, the first report from a hacker showing a risk came within hours of getting started. This surprised many within the Pentagon and brought up new concerns.