Cyber Network Defense
California Army National Guard
Cyber and information technology opportunities are available within the California Army National Guard (CA ARNG). Units such as the Cyber Protection Team (CPT 171) and the Defensive Cyber Operations Element (DCOE) exist to defend cyber exploitation, disruption and destruction.
Cyber Protection Team
California’s Cyber Protection Team 171 is the newest team of modern warfare. Soldiers in the Cyber Corps operate and defend the military’s cyberspace by conducting offensive operations against cyber threats.
Defensive Cyber Operations Element
The Defensive Cyber Operations Elements performs computer network defense on DoD networks. DCOE is composed of Signal Soldiers that focus on computer network defense by detecting unauthorized activity in cyberspace domains. “The DoD is ultimately responsible for defending the nation from attack in cyberspace, just as it is in all other domains. In the event of a foreign cyber attack on the United States with the potential for significant national security or economic consequences, the DoD, including USCYBERCOM with the support of NSA/CSS, will be prepared to respond.”
GEN Keith Alexander Cdr, USCYBERCOM Congressional testimony, 12 June 2013
What To Expect In The Guard
The Signal and Cyber Corps support the State and DoD networks through infrastructure service, training operations and incident response. Soldiers specialized in technology career fields conduct defensive and offensive cyber operations during natural disasters, incident responses, and training to support and maintain a ready force for Federal missions and State civil support.
Cyber Network Defense
Cyber Network Defense Team at a Glance
The Cyber Network Defense (CND) team was established in 2013 as part of California’s approach to cyber awareness and mitigation. The CND team is a cybersecurity organization within the California Military Department (CMD).
The Cyber Network Defense team aims to provide cybersecurity assistance to State, Local, Academia, and Critical Infrastructure providers.
The CND team is partnered with the following State of California agencies to support the cybersecurity across the California west coast region and various other community programs/critical infrastructure providers:
- State CIO/CISO
- Cal-OES CAL-CSIC
- DHS Cyber
- FBI – Cyber Team (Sacramento)
- CHP Cyber Crime Unit
Cyber Network Defense Team Members
The CND team is comprised of individuals in the following services:
- CA Army National Guard
- CA Air Guard
- California State Guard
The Soldiers in the CND are trained to lead, operate, and maintain small group teams and information technology systems to support the Cyber State mission. Employees receive training and hands on experience to defend against cyber threats. Training includes on-the-job experience and industry-based certifications.
The CND team maintains its focus on cybersecurity through participation in State and National events.
Independent Security Assessments
State agencies are mandated to receive security assessments and penetration tests conducted by the Cyber Network Defense team on a rotational basis.
Lunch and Learn
The CND team hosts quarterly Lunch and Learn events for State Chief Information Security Officers and their teams. The events bring civilian and military cybersecurity professional together to focus on cybersecurity best practices.
Cyber Dawn 2020
The Cyber Network Defense team and Defensive Cyber Operations Element (Federal) hosted the first Cyber Dawn 2020 training event. Cyber Dawn 2020 is a two-week exercise designed to provide a tactical level cyber response to defend web-based infrastructure and provide team training in Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Region 9.
Soldiers and Airmen from the California National Guard, the Arizona National Guard and the Nevada National Guard participate in Cyber Dawn 2020 running across all three states.
State Annual Events:
- Cybersecurity Education Summit
- Critical Infrastructure Security Summit
STEM Opportunities in Cyber
The National Guard offers the opportunity for IT specialized individuals to use their cyber-related experience and education to defend the State of California and our nation. Soldiers in STEM careers such as Cyber have additional perks than the benefits of being a service member. Cyber Soldiers learn skills that make them immensely valuable in the civilian sector. These elite Soldiers dominate the fiber-optic fight and keep cyber threats at bay.
- Military professional training in commercial and advanced military equipment
- Certifications in security, network infrastructure and hacking
- Real-world assessment of threats and vulnerabilities
- Incident response
- State and Federal tuition assistance
- Transferrable military training towards civilian certifications and diplomas
As a Soldier in the CA National Guard, service members are eligible for full-time employment in military managed careers.
- Available State career programs:
- Army Guard Reserve
- State Active Duty
- Federal Technician
Ways to Join the Cyber Team
- CA National Guard officer – Army and Air Guard
- Enlisted Soldier/Airmen
- California State Guard service member
National Guard Officers
- For officer opportunities, you can apply to attend Officer Candidate School (OCS) or participate in the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC), and then request the Cyber Branch
- Air Force ROTC participation is also available
National Guard Enlisted Soldiers
- To become an Army enlisted Soldier in the Cyber Corps, you can speak with a local Army recruiter and ask about becoming a Cyber or Electronic Warfare Specialist
See What The Guard Can Mean To Your Future
Contact the CND