A Pentagon official said he resigned because US cybersecurity is no match for China, calling it 'kindergarten level'

Nicolas Chaillan was the US Air Force's chief software officer and worked on Pentagon security.
In September, he resigned and said to the FT that the US was far behind China in AI.

He stated, "We have no other fighting chance against China within fifteen to twenty years."

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According to a Pentagon cybersecurity official, he quit because it is impossible for the US and China to compete in AI.

Nicolas Chaillan joined US Air Force in August 2018 as the first chief software officer. He worked with the Pentagon to provide it with the best software.

Chaillan resigned on September 2 due to the Pentagon's unwillingness to make cybersecurity/AI a priority in his LinkedIn Post.

Chaillan, in his first interview since his departure, stated that China is miles ahead of the US.

"We don't have any other fighting chance against China for the next fifteen to twenty years." He said that it was already a done deal right now.

Chaillan continued by stating that some government departments' AI capabilities and cyber defenses were "kindergarten-level," according to the FT.

In recent years, ransomware and hacking attacks have hit a number of US departments.

The SolarWinds hack compromised the US Treasury, Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defence in April 2020. Hackers gained access to some emails and were able spy on digital activities.

Chaillan also stated to the FT that the refusal of Google to collaborate with the Pentagon in AI is compromising US national security.

After 12 employees quit, Google ended its partnership with the Pentagon in 2018. The project was where Googled had helped the Pentagon create software to improve the accuracy and precision of drone strikes.

Chaillan stated that private companies in China are available to answer any questions.

China wants to be the world's leading AI superpower by 2030. A March report by the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence stated that the US is not ready to defend itself in the "coming artificial intelligence (AI era)."

Chaillan stated that even if the US spends three-times as much on defense as China, it doesn't really matter because the money is going to the wrong places, according to the FT.

Chaillan stated that he was disappointed by the Pentagon's inability to commit to cybersecurity in a LinkedIn post.

"I'm tired of constantly chasing money and support to do my job. He wrote that my office has no billet (physical location) and no funding this year as well as the next.

Chaillan stated to the FT that he will testify before Congress regarding the danger posed by China.

Insider reached out to the Pentagon for comment.