1 General, EUR 1 billion for France’s cyber-defense

Since every military operation now includes a more or less developed cyber component, cyber-defense has become a major issue taken into account at the State’s highest levels, explained the French Defense Ministry (MINDEF) back in 2014 and which has just introduced its cyber-warfare national doctrine.

While visiting the Direction générale de l’armement (DGA) – the French Government Defense procurement and technology agency – Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian summarized the basis of the new doctrine, including intelligence, defense and offensive strategies. While the MINDEF had mainly talked so far about defending France against network penetration, facilities’ destruction and remote takeover, it is now strengthening its response and neutralization capacities.

Like the United States’ CYBERCOM founded in 2009, France will now have under the authority of the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces (CEMA) a “cyber-commander” namely a flag officer who will work using a EUR 1 billion budget, a military staff and a workforce of around 2,600 personnel and 600 experts.

In February 2014, Le Drian included cyber-defense as a strategic priority for national sovereignty and introduced the “Défense Cyber” pact based on six main axis and fifty measures “aiming at increasing the mobilization of the whole MINDEF regarding cybersecurity,” and at “supporting innovative solutions,” especially through public-private cooperation.