PENSACOLA, Fla. – The director of exercises and training for U.S. Cyber Command visited the Center for Information Warfare Training (CIWT), on Corry Station, September 29.
Rear Adm. Christopher Bartz, U.S. Coast Guard, used his visit to better understand the Navy’s cyber training program and contributions to a ready, competent Cyber Mission Force.
Bartz participated in a cyber training-focused roundtable discussion with key leaders from CIWT, Navy Information Operations Command, Coast Guard and the National Security Agency.
He expressed a concern that cyber training shouldn’t be based on a typical learning model where students are taught materials and take tests. Master Chief Petty Officer Aaron Manning, Cryptologic Technician Networks (CTN) Rate Training Manager, and acting CIWT Command Master Chief, assuaged his worries by explaining that about 70 percent of the training time for students taking cyber courses was spent doing hands-on learning.
After the roundtable, Bartz was provided a tour of the Information Warfare Training Command (IWTC) Corry Station modular Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) where he was given briefs and demonstrations of the Persistent Cyber Training Environment (PCTE) and the Joint Cyber Analysis Course (JCAC) Extended Training Content (eTC).
Eric Starace, chief technical officer for RESOLVN, told the admiral that the PCTE is used to build resilient cyber defense analysts using repetitions of hands-on training for each aspect of the curriculum. He continued that the PCTE allows the instructors to quickly build ranges (cyber “maneuver space”) that are geared toward live-action events to give students that hands-on experience.
Starace then provided a demonstration displaying the basics of the digital environment students would interact with during the course.
Next Bartz was briefed on the JCAC eTC by Mandy Ledet, training manager for JCAC, who related the focus of the course and also provided a glimpse at the interface students used during the course. She explained how JCAC eTC provided value to the students during training.
After the briefs on the PCTE and JCAC eTC, Bartz remarked that there is a lot of opportunity here and said what eTC is doing for JCAC is a game changer. He told the group that the efficiencies used to increase competencies in eTC could be applied to other courses. Bartz emphasized that cyber is continually evolving and as we see our adversaries change their tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) that we need to be able to match that.
“I am pleased we were able to provide U.S. Cyber Command leadership with a little better idea of what our cyber program provides to the Fleet and the Joint Force,” said CDR Michael Tiefel, CIWT Executive Officer.
Center for Information Warfare Training delivers trained information warfare professionals to the Navy and joint services, enabling optimal performance of information warfare across the full spectrum of military operations.
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