Microsoft joins Space ISAC as a founding member to support cybersecurity

The Space Information Sharing and Analysis Center (ISAC) welcomed its newest member, Microsoft, on June 23 with an announcement highlighting the tech giant’s cybersecurity expertise.

Microsoft joined the Space Information Sharing and Analysis Center as a founding member, according to announcements published by both organizations Wednesday expressing their collective goals are to assist in the protection of America’s digital assets beyond Earth.

Microsoft is expanding its role in the aerospace industry, through a partnership. Microsoft announced Azure Orbital in 2020 to link satellite networks with the Azure cloud. Microsoft also has revealed partnerships with Amergint Technologies, Kratos, KSAT, Kubos, SES, Thales Alenia Space, U.S. Electrodynamics, and ViaSat.

ISACs is a membership-based organization that includes industry, academia, and other non-governmental organizations to work together to gather information on the risks to critical infrastructure. They often have the support of the Government, and act as a bridge between the public and private sectors. The organization is the United States’ only space-dedicated ISAC.

“Space cybersecurity is relatively unknown territory because we’re approaching and doing some things for the first time, fortunately through Space ISAC we have the opportunity to build a foundation for protection from a knowledge pool with deep security expertise,” Frank Backes, chair of the Space ISAC board of directors and Kratos Space Federal senior vice president said in a statement. “Microsoft brings its longstanding history of proficiency in cybersecurity to its role as a founding member including its experience detecting and stopping attacks and eliminating persistent threats which bring clear value to our membership.”

Space ISAC is also part of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency’s Space Systems Critical Infrastructure Working Group, publicly unveiled in May.

Microsoft invests over $1 billion annually in cybersecurity and has a team of more than 3,500 global security experts across 77 countries.

Microsoft joins the Space ISSAC as one of the founders of the company, together with the Aerospace Corp., Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Booz Allen Hamilton, MITRE, SES, Lockheed Martin, Parsons Corp., Purdue University, Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, Utah State University’s Space Dynamics Laboratory and Northrop Grumman.

Bill Chappell, Microsoft vice president of mission systems, plans to represent Microsoft on the Space ISAC board of directors.

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