DOD's global fiber network becomes operational

The Defense Department announced today that its Global Information Grid-Bandwidth Expansion program achieved full operational capability earlier this month?meaning that one third of the agency's plan for a global network for classified and nonclassified data is complete.

The $900 million program eventually will be linked with the Joint Tactical Radio System and the Transformational Communications Architecture to form a high-speed, high-capacity fiber network, officials have said.

As of Dec. 20, GIG-BE successfully completed operational testing and evaluation and is accredited to support classified and Top Secret data traffic, DOD officials said. GIG-BE now is at 86 sites around the world, and officials said it still must reach a few outlying nodes.

"The GIG-BE program creates an optimized backbone similar to an interstate system where data traveling great distances can be moved at high speed without bottlenecks," said Lt. Gen. Charles Croom, director of the Defense Information Systems Agency, which is in charge of implementing the GIG-BE, in a statement.

DOD would not comment further for this story.

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