Jason Healey is a Senior Research Scholar in the Faculty of International and Public Affairs and Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University. He is also a Senior Fellow with the Cyber Statecraft Initiative at the Atlantic Council, where he was the program's founding director. He has published several academic articles, essays, and books on the topic of cyber security and has advised on security measures for corporate, government, and military institutions. He has been identified as the first historian of cyber conflict.
Healey was born and raised in Rhode Island, and at 17, joined the United States Air Force. Initially training to be a fighter pilot, Healey transitioned to signals intelligence and in 1998, began working at The Pentagon to implement a computer network defense system. During his Air Force career, Jason was awarded two Meritorious Service Medals based on his contributions in cyber security during his service at the Pentagon. Healey later received a master's degree in Information Security from James Madison University.
Work in cyber policy
Healey has worked in numerous settings with regard to cyber policy, its implementation, and addressing responses to security threats. In Hong Kong, he served as the vice president for Goldman Sachs where he developed a crisis-response system built to address incidents across the Asian continent. He has also worked at The White House as the Director for Cyber Infrastructure Protection. He is currently a board member on the Cyber Conflict Studies Association and the Military Cyber Professionals Association. The extent of his work has led one magazine to refer to Healey as the first historian of cyber conflict.
Frequently, Healey has publicly commented and written articles on high-profile malware threats and cyber policy. For instance, Healey has discussed the potential advantages and disadvantages of the United States launching cyber-based attacks. In regards to such an offensive on Syria, he stated that "you no longer have to drop physical bombs and kill people, that it can be targeted, non-lethal microforce", but further surmised that due to past leaks of the United States' involvement in Stuxnet, relevant government agencies may have decided against it. Healey has also commented on the Heartbleed bug, noting the failure of the NSA to live up to its stated priority of defense by not exposing the bug when it was found, and he said that the organization would be "shredded by the computer security community" for this failure. In 2013, Healey also took a critical stance on the current state of mass surveillance in the United States. He predicted that U.S. interests abroad would suffer "deep and long term damage" given that the administration could not implement any alternatives to spying conducted by the National Security Agency.
In 2012, Healey published A Fierce Domain, Cyber Conflict 1986 to 2012, which explores the idea that confrontations that have taken place within cyberspace has established a new kind of conflict. This development is explored historically, starting in 1986 with a hacking initiative planned by the KGB to steal military plans from the U.S. in what is referred to as the Cuckoo's Egg Case. The book received a positive reception and has been referred to as a definitive historical record of cyber conflict.
In March 2014, Forbes Magazine identified Healey as one of twenty cyber policy experts to follow on Twitter.
- Cyber Security Policy Guidebook (2012), co-author, published by John Wiley & Sons (ISBN 9781118241325)
- A Fierce Domain, Cyber Conflict 1986 to 2012 (2013), author, published by the Cyber Conflict Studies Association (ISBN 9780989327404)