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NASA's Exploration Initiative (EI) will push space exploration missions to the limit. Future missions will be required to be self-managing as well as self-directed, in order to meet the challenges of human and robotic space exploration. We discuss security and self-protection in autonomic agent based-systems, and propose the ultimate self-protection mechanism for such systems - self-destruction. Like other metaphors in autonomic computing, this is inspired by biological systems, and is the analog of biological apoptosis. Finally, we discuss the role it might play in future NASA space exploration missions.