The U.S. Department of Defense hasn’t followed through on its commitment to convert to IPv6, the new Internet standard designed to make room for an explosion of new connected devices.
The DoD demonstrated IPv6 in 2008 but then disabled the technology because it didn’t have enough people trained to use it and was worried about potential security risks, according to a report by the Inspector General of the department. The Inspector General issued the report internally in December and on Monday released a redacted version to the public.
The current Internet Protocol, IPv4, doesn’t meet battlefield needs, according to the report. Among other things, IPv6 would let troops quickly set up mobile, ad-hoc networks in the field. In addition, the slow transition to IPv6 has left the military without the expertise to identify malicious activity that uses the new protocol, the report said.