The Army wants to know the best technology and methods for guarding the datasets that will fuel its future artificial-intelligence and machine-learning tools and it’s open to insights from industry, academia and others.
In a request for information posted Friday, Army officials detailed a forthcoming report by the Army Science Board titled “Testing, Validating, and Protecting Army Data Sets for Use in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Applications,” where the independent research body plans to explore methodologies and techniques for dataset security as well as information on testing AI-enhanced systems in battlefield applications.
The board is seeking technology data from sources such as traditional and non-traditional defense contractors, small business, federally funded research and development contractors and universities that can help to inform this report.
The board wants to know about the use of cryptographic algorithms to secure sensitive data, the techniques of data anonymization and pseudonymization to maintain privacy while retaining analytic value and the inspection and analysis methods used to evaluate dataset security. It also wants to learn how to test for data poisoning and assess system performance under realistic scenarios.
In addition to that the board is also exploring testing for “robustness against adversarial AI technologies and assessment of system performance under various realistic scenarios,” alongside accuracy of AI-enabled systems against threats, “for example, pitting Army units, against an opposing force with intent to win, in joint experimentation or training exercises.”
Applicants to the RFI could also provide insights into how validation and verification methods could be applied to AI/ML datasets, integration and interoperability strategies to ensure the technology works at the unit level and methods for bolstering user confidence and reliability in the systems.
Although the RFI notes that it is not expected that a contract will be awarded from this report, the board could conduct further market research based on its findings.
The Army Science Board–which provides independent advice to the Army on a range of procurement, technology and business functions–has been actively exploring the defense applications of AI/ML for many years, including a 2019 report on the potential battlefield applications of the technology and the plans of near-peer rivals like China and Russia for its use.
Applicants have until May 12 to respond.