In testimony to the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday, the deputy commander of the U.S. Cyber Command, Lt. Gen. James McLaughlin, said the war on ISIS is providing his troops with their first experience in combat. "The war on ISIL is the first at scale opportunity to do that in support of U.S. Central Command. In many cases this is the first actual live opportunity for these forces to conduct that type of mission," he said, describing US cyber warfare and the "dark web" used by terrorist organizations. He said the command aims to have over 6,000 troops and an overall budget of close to $5 billion in the future.
Meanwhile, James Woolsey, former head of the CIA, said this week it is doubtful that current US cyber abilities can thwart the next Orlando-style terror plot. To foil such plots, he said, the US needs advanced technology capable of identifying terror-related data among the endless amounts of information on the internet. He also said the US needs to make optimal use of its intelligence capabilities.