The Defense Department revised the roles and responsibilities of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence to address a changing global environment for intelligence.

Through a revision of DoD Directive 5143.01, which was originally created in 2005, the Under Secretary of Defense has extended responsibilities that include cybersecurity, insider threats, leaks of classified information and more. The Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence will serve as the DoD senior official for the insider threat program and “develop policy and guidance and oversees implementation of the DoD insider threat program.”

Plus, the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence will “communicate with… members of the public… and non-governmental organizations.” Yet communications with the news media will be handled by the Office of Public Affairs, the directive outlines.

The current Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence, Michael G. Vickers, outlined five defense intelligence operational priorities at a House Armed Services Committee hearing last April. They were: countering terrorism and in particular threats posed by al-Qaida; countering the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction; countering the actions of repressive governments, such as in Syria; countering state-on-state aggression; and countering cyber threats.

“To address the intelligence gaps that exist within these operational priority areas, we are focused on enhancing defense intelligence capabilities in five areas: enhancing global coverage; improving our ability to operate in anti-access/area denial, or A2AD, environments; sustaining counterterrorism and counter-proliferation capabilities; continuing to develop our cyber-operations capabilities; and strengthening our counterintelligence capabilities and reforming our security clearance processes to minimize insider threats,” said Vickers.

The Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence position was established by the defense authorization act, in order to improve management and coordination of defense intelligence programs.

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Chandler Harris is a freelance business and technology writer located in Silicon Valley. He has written for numerous publications including Entrepreneur, InformationWeek, San Jose Magazine, Government Technology, Public CIO,, U.S. Banker, Digital Communities Magazine, Converge Magazine, Surfer's Journal, Adventure Sports Magazine,, and the San Jose Business Journal. Chandler is also engaged in helping companies further their content marketing needs through content strategy, optimization and creation, as well as blogging and social media platforms. When he's not writing, Chandler enjoys his beach haunt of Santa Cruz where he rides roller coasters with his son, surfs and bikes across mountain ranges.