Massif Rocks!

Archive for the ‘CEMA’ Category

The Catalyst Accelerator Unveils Next Cohort: Cyber for Space Applications

Wednesday, June 17th, 2020

Discovering Innovative Tech to Keep our Nation’s Cyber-Physical Systems Secure
Colorado Springs, Colo – June 11, 2020 – The Catalyst Accelerator (CA) announced its next cohort, Cyber for Space Applications, launching September 1, 2020.  The goal of the CA is to increase Space  Force [TS1] awareness and rapid acquisition of commercial, dual-use space technology by providing relevant business development training to Accelerator companies and connecting these entrepreneurs with users, decision makers, and potential new customers in the DoD and commercial realms. Eight companies will be chosen to participate in the program held at Catalyst Campus in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

“How might we apply cyber technologies to secure the next generation of space operations and increase resiliency?” the problem statement poses.  Cyber-physical systems are becoming more integral than ever before, introducing new sets of unique problems in both public and private sectors. It is vital that we come together to identify, understand and limit areas where threats could arise before they are exploited. The Cyber for Space Applications Accelerator, powered by the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Space Vehicles Directorate, will be a 12-week, semi-residential program. Participating companies will receive a $12K-grant through the Catalyst Accelerator’s Corporate Sponsor, Booz Allen Hamilton, with an additional $3K available at the end of the Accelerator program when all deliverables have been met.

At the end of the program, all participating companies will have the opportunity to pitch to government stakeholders, industry leaders and commercial investors during a demonstration day. This enables cohort companies to raise awareness of their capabilities in order to solicit additional capital or follow-on government funding for further technological development.

KiMar Gartman, the Catalyst Accelerator Program Director, states, “We are excited to assist the Air Force and Space Force in finding companies with unique cyber solutions that will secure the next generation of space operations and increase resiliency.  We look forward to collaborating with our dynamic space community to offer the very best program possible!”

Captain Keith Hudson, Government Lead for the Cyber for Space Applications cohort, stated, “As we face increasing cyber resiliency challenges in space, the upcoming Accelerator provides an opportunity for the USSF and AFRL to connect with small businesses to develop the necessary solutions to those challenges.”

Applications for the Cyber for Space Applications Accelerator will be closing August 3. The Catalyst Accelerator will be holding “Ask Me Anything” sessions on June 18 and July 23 to address inquiries related to the current CA Problem Statement along with other general program questions potential applicants may have.

For updates and other relevant announcements regarding the Cyber for Space Applications Accelerator, follow this cohort on social media with #CACSA. Interested applicants may learn more about the program and apply on the Catalyst Accelerator’s website, CatalystAccelerator.Space/Cyber-for-Space-Applications/.

The 75th Ranger Regiment Announces Permanent Activation of the Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion

Wednesday, June 17th, 2020

Effective June 16, 2020, the Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment is officially activated and an enduring part of the 75th Ranger Regiment.

The Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion was provisionally activated on May 22, 2017 at Fort Benning, Georgia.

It was announced in October 2019, that the battalion would became a permanent part of the 75th Ranger Regiment.

“Within Sullivan’s Charter for the 75th Ranger Regiment, we continue to evolve as an ‘awesome force composed of skilled, dedicated Soldiers who can do things with their hands and weapons better than anyone,’” Lt. Col. Timothy Sikora, Commander, Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion said.

“Today the intelligence and cyber Rangers remain at the top of their fields, able to do things with their tools that are rarely matched by their peers.”

“Each one of the RMIB Rangers earned their tan beret and scroll the same as every other military occupational specialty in the 75th Ranger Regiment formation,” Sikora added. “Everyone is a Ranger first.”

Whether it is unmanned aircraft systems operators, all-source analysts, geospatial analysts, human intelligence collectors, technical operations, electronic warfare or cyber analysts, RMIB Rangers make up the majority of Ranger-tabbed Soldiers in their specialties.

“In deployed and garrison environments, the RMIB adapts to meet the needs of the 75th Ranger Regiment,” Sikora said. “We are 75% towards our authorized fill and continue to actively recruit motivated Soldiers from all specialties to join our team.”

For more information on serving with RMIB, go to: www.benning.army.mil/Tenant/75thRanger/RMIB-ABOUT or email [email protected] or [email protected].

About the Regimental Military Intelligence Battalion

The battalion’s mission is to recruit, train, develop, and employ highly trained and specialized Rangers to conduct full spectrum intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, cyber, and electronic warfare operations in order to enhance the Regimental Commander’s situational awareness and inform his decision-making process. Presently, the RMIB consists of a headquarters detachment and two companies.

The staff and command group are embedded within the Headquarters and Headquarters Detachment. It leads the Regiment’s recruitment and management of intelligence Rangers, synchronizes intelligence training and operations across the Regiment and with other special operations and conventional forces, and also provides intelligence support to the Regimental staff.

The Military Intelligence Company possesses a diverse mix of capabilities which include all-source analysts, geospatial analysts, human intelligence collectors, counterintelligence agents, and unmanned aerial systems. This enables the company to conduct multi-discipline collection and production, expeditionary imagery collection and processing, exploitation, and dissemination of raw data, and all-source analysis, to further enable the Regiment’s training and operations.

The Cyber Electromagnetic Activities Company integrates and synchronizes cyber, electronic warfare, signals intelligence, and technical surveillance in support of the Regimental Commander’s objectives. The CEMA Company represents a new approach in line with the Army’s intent of fielding a modernized force capable of operations on any front. The multi-domain concept provides a non-linear approach where all events can occur across the environment at any time. CEMA places emphasis on innovation, technological advancement and electronic pursuit to support real time operations against any threat, digital or otherwise.

Rangers Lead the Way!

TacJobs – CEMA With The 75th Ranger Regiment

Saturday, May 30th, 2020

The 75th Ranger Regiment has a dedicated Military Intelligence Battalion and recruits MOS 17C, 35N, and 35P to conduct Cyber and ElectroMagnetic Activities in support of the Regiment and other SOF elements.

MOS 17C: Cyber Operations Specialist integrates full spectrum Cyber capabilities to the 75th Ranger Regiment and the special operations community. Cyber Operators specialize in computer network operations, cyber mission management, technology integration, and offensive cyberspace operations.?

MOSs 35N/35P: Signal Intelligence Analyst and Cryptologic Linguist, serve on an Operational Signals Intelligence Teams (OST) specializing in tactical ground SIGINT analysis. OST provides full spectrum signal intelligence to the 75th Ranger Regiment.

In the Army, send your SRB from a .mil account to [email protected] for your application packet.

In AIT, talk to your instructor and get with a Ranger recruiter to sign a volunteer statement to come to Ranger Assessment and Selection Program 1.

Not in the Army, get with your local Army recruiter and ask about an Option 40 contract.

Talent Management Key to Filling Future Specialized Multi Domain Operations Units for Army

Tuesday, May 26th, 2020

POINT MUGU, Calif. — The Army is hunting for top talent to fill the ranks of specialized units for multi-domain operations, following the first one standing up last year in Washington state.

In 2019, a mixture of the Army’s space, cyber, and electronic warfare capabilities was activated as a cohesive unit called the Intelligence, Information, Cyber, Electronic Warfare, and Space Battalion — or simply I2CEWS.

The battalion has become “the centerpiece of the Multi-Domain Task Force,” Gen. John M. Murray, commander of U.S. Army Futures Command, said Tuesday during the Association of Old Crows virtual EMS Summit.

Located at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington, the battalion combines non-lethal Army capabilities with kinetic capabilities, such as missile defense. The I2CEWS operates in support of U.S. Army Pacific, and AFC has “plans to stand up more as we begin to experiment with this formation,” Murray said.

The Multi-Domain Task Force is a model of how the Army envisions joint-warfighting on future battlefields against near-peer competitors, like Russia and China. Before the Army activates additional formations, though, Murray said it will first need the right talent to fill the ranks.

“The No. 1 thing is finding talent, and I’m convinced we have some of that talent already in our ranks,” Murray said. “And we’re going to have to go into our recruiting pools to find some of that talent. The Army is already beginning to explore innovative ways in talent management.”

Some innovative talent management programs include the Assignment Interactive Module 2.0, or AIM 2.0. The information system is a way for officers to build detailed resumes and take part in a market-style hiring system for their next assignments as organizations post specific positions they are looking to fill.

Talent management will also be part of the Integrated Personnel and Pay System-Army, or IPPS-A, a web-based human resources system already adopted by the National Guard, that will soon integrate the Army’s personnel, pay and talent management functions into one secure web-based application.

Much like how traditional battlefields will change under the information age, the Army will also recruit talent differently. For example, Murray explained, “Thirty-eight years ago, when I was offered a four-year Army ROTC scholarship, they couldn’t care less what I majored in.

“So, I picked the easiest major I could find,” he admitted. But today “we’re offering [cadets] a six-year scholarship to come out with a degree the Army needs, and if they can’t meet our requirements, then they’re not going to join the Army.”

The Army has taken other steps to attract and keep cyber talent, such as hosting cyber hackathons, boosting pay and incentives, and direct commissioning.

But “the most attractive way to retain our cyber warriors is the thrill of the mission. To be honest, [cyber warriors] are doing things they could not do outside the Army without spending time in jail,” Murray said, regarding cyber warfare missions.

Cyber warriors direct and conduct integrated electronic warfare, information, and cyberspace actions. They are responsible for the aggressive defense of Army networks, data infrastructure, and cyber weapons systems.

For Murray, who is responsible for leading a team of more than 24,000 Soldiers and civilians in the Army’s modernization enterprise, helping shape the Army’s future force is personal.

The four-star talked about his eight grandchildren, especially one granddaughter who, he believes, will one day be “an infantry commander wearing airborne and Ranger tabs.” It’s her generation he’s working for, he said, not “old Soldiers like me.”

Murray wasn’t the only one with that mindset.

“I use some of the same equipment my father used, and my nephews are now flying some of the same equipment that I flew,” said Lt. Gen. Neil Thurgood, director of hypersonics, directed energy, space, and rapid acquisition.

“We need our grandchildren to fly new and modernized equipment as we continue to go forward,” Thurgood added. “So to those of us that have aged a little bit in the process of our careers, it is personal, because we spent that time with our Soldiers, and we spent that time with our families.”

In the end, that’s really what AFC and “the whole team, to include our acquisition partners, brings to our Army, delivering solutions that our Soldiers need when they need it,” Murray said.

“This is about our kids and our grandkids that will defend this great nation going into the future,” he added. “That’s really what personalizes this mission for me, and that’s a heavy rucksack to carry.”

By Thomas Brading, Army News Service

Army Scientists Create Innovative Quantum Sensor – Covers Entire RF Spectrum

Saturday, March 21st, 2020

ADELPHI, Md. — A quantum sensor could give Soldiers a way to detect communication signals over the entire radio frequency spectrum, from 0 to 100 GHz, said researchers from the Army.

Such wide spectral coverage by a single antenna is impossible with a traditional receiver system, and would require multiple systems of individual antennas, amplifiers and other components.

In 2018, Army scientists were the first in the world to create a quantum receiver that uses highly excited, super-sensitive atoms–known as Rydberg atoms–to detect communications signals, said David Meyer, a scientist at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command’s Army Research Laboratory. The researchers calculated the receiver’s channel capacity, or rate of data transmission, based on fundamental principles, and then achieved that performance experimentally in their lab–improving on other groups’ results by orders of magnitude, Meyer said.

“These new sensors can be very small and virtually undetectable, giving Soldiers a disruptive advantage,” Meyer said. “Rydberg-atom based sensors have only recently been considered for general electric field sensing applications, including as a communications receiver. While Rydberg atoms are known to be broadly sensitive, a quantitative description of the sensitivity over the entire operational range has never been done.”

To assess potential applications, Army scientists conducted an analysis of the Rydberg sensor’s sensitivity to oscillating electric fields over an enormous range of frequencies–from 0 to 10^12 Hertz. The results show that the Rydberg sensor can reliably detect signals over the entire spectrum and compare favorably with other established electric field sensor technologies, such as electro-optic crystals and dipole antenna-coupled passive electronics.

“Quantum mechanics allows us to know the sensor calibration and ultimate performance to a very high degree, and it’s identical for every sensor,” Meyer said. “This result is an important step in determining how this system could be used in the field.”This work supports the Army’s modernization priorities in next-generation computer networks and assured position, navigation and timing, as it could potentially influence novel communications concepts or approaches to detection of RF signals for geolocation.

In the future, Army scientists will investigate methods to continue to improve the sensitivity to detect even weaker signals and expand detection protocols for more complicated waveforms.

The Journal of Physics B published the research, “Assessment of Rydberg atoms for wideband electric field sensing,” in its special issue on interacting Rydberg atoms. Army scientists David H. Meyer, Kevin C. Cox and Paul D. Kunz led this research, as well as Zachary A. Castillo from the University of Maryland. This work was supported by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

By US Army CCDC Army Research Laboratory Public Affairs

US Army G-2: Intel, Cyber Soldiers ‘Duking It Out’ Daily With Enemy

Thursday, March 19th, 2020

ARLINGTON, Va. — The Army’s senior intelligence officer likened intelligence and cyber Soldiers to those in the combat arms since they fight on networks everyday with adversaries.

“Our intelligence professionals and our cyber operators are duking it out,” Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier said. “I kind of think of ourselves, cyber and military intelligence, as sort of combat arms. I know it’s hard to get your head around that, but we’re the ones who are kind of doing that right now.”

Berrier spoke Wednesday as part of the Association of the U.S. Army’s breakfast series on threats the Army is facing in today’s era of great power competition.

RUSSIA

Since the end of the Cold War, the general said Russia has transformed its army to be smaller with new capabilities that it has been able to test in operations in nearby countries.

Using those lessons, he said Russia now uses those capabilities in Syria, which include air and air defense, precision targeting, special operations and contract forces, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, or ISR.

The capabilities have also created standoff for Russia as it presses back against NATO presence in Europe, he said.

“We’re watching that very, very closely,” Berrier said. “[We] don’t think [Russia] wants to get in a toe-to-toe fight with the U.S. [It] wants to be regionally dominant and to be a global player.”

CHINA

In the Pacific, he said China aims to be a global economic hegemony by 2049, and at same time gain military parity with the U.S. to push American forces out of the region.

“It really [wants] to establish a new world order,” Berrier said. “They are jealous of the economic system that we have.”

The general added that China would one day like to see its currency, the yuan, replace the U.S. dollar as the global currency.

To achieve its ends, China has started to militarize islands in the South China Sea, creating an effective defensive line.

China “would like to control everything out to the first and second island chain and just keep us out,” Berrier said.

Similar to Russia, China has reorganized its army to be smaller with new capabilities in air and air defense, space and ISR using intellectual property it illegally obtained.

“Much of the modernization that [its] been able to accomplish is with technology that [was] stolen from us and our partners,” Berrier said.

China has also carried out a reversal of the Marshall Plan, he said, by going into countries struggling financially and paying off their debt and building infrastructure. As a result, China then sort of owns that country and can place forces and capability inside of it, he said.

“We’ve seen this play out across Africa, we’ve seen it play with our Middle Eastern partners, we’ve seen it play in South America,” he said.

The general noted that by doing this China is also trying to connect markets to its own.

MODERNIZATION

The U.S. Army’s modernization priorities and multi-domain operations doctrine is currently tackling these near-peer threats, he said.

“The modernization that we’re doing for Russia and the modernization that we’re doing for China really will do the same thing for us in both theaters,” he said.

The Army is putting together multi-domain task forces that have I2CEWS — intelligence, information, cyber, electronic warfare and space capabilities — that will allow Soldiers to punch through enemy frontlines.

They “will help us in that boxer stance and be able to get inside, penetrate the ability that they have to keep us out,” he said.

Once complete, multi-domain operations will be backed up by “multi-domain intelligence.”

“So if you want to do MDO, you have to do MDI,” he said. “And in MDI in the future it’s all about the data and how we process and how we pull [artificial intelligence] into that.”

Army intelligence plans to have three layers of upgraded capabilities at the terrestrial, aerial and space levels.

At the terrestrial level, brigades will receive more capability that combines signal, intelligence, electronic warfare and cyber assets.

In the air, he noted, the Army will need a new platform that goes higher and can sense deeper.

And for space, the Army looks to work with its partners to take advantage of assets, whether they’re owned by the government or commercial satellites, to carry out long-range precision fires in coordination with aerial and terrestrial systems.

“Think of this sensor grid, from space to mud, that is connected through multi-domain intelligence using and fusing data at the speed of combat operations,” he said.

Known as TITAN, the Tactical Intelligence Targeting Access Node is a scalable and expeditionary intelligence ground station that leverages space, aerial and terrestrial sensors.

A TITAN space prototype, which is expected to be delivered by fiscal year 2022, is being developed to provide targetable data from these sensors to fire networks.

“TITAN is going to be the ground station that replaces a number of these systems that we have today [and] is central to all of it,” he said.

Story by Sean Kimmons, Army News Service

Photos by Bill Roche, US Army & Luc Dunn, AUSA






SOFWERX – SOF Space, Cyber Space and Electromagnetic Spectrum Rapid Capabilities Assessment

Wednesday, March 11th, 2020

In conjunction with USSOCOM, SOFWERX will host a SOF Space, Cyber Space and Electromagnetic Spectrum Rapid Capabilities Assessment (RCA) 27 April – 01 May 2020 in Tampa.

The goal of the event is to develop and produce a “Technology Road Map” to provide a system/subsystem level breakdown of technology partners, their technology maturity, risk and provide insight for deciding next steps, such as technology investment opportunities.

Twenty (20) selected participants will be afforded up to $5,000 for the week to offset travel costs and provide for a modest stipend for their participation.

Request to Attend NLT 26 March 11:59 PM EST. For will details, visit www.sofwerx.org/rca2.






NetWars Competition Test Knowledge, Skills of Military Cyber Warriors

Sunday, December 29th, 2019

WASHINGTON — Loud music blared throughout the crowded hall of the Washington Hilton as cyber professionals from the military, industry and academia launched into the final day of the NetWars Tournament of Champions, Monday.

NetWars is a suite of interactive learning scenarios designed to provide training and assess the cyber proficiencies of personnel, according to the SANS Institute, the organization responsible for the competition. Individual and team competitors that won other NetWars event over the past two years were invited to the final tournament in Washington, D.C.

“We have organized the NetWars Tournament of Champions for about six years now,” said Ed Skoudis, the creator of NetWars. “The idea was to bring together the ‘best of the best,’ and have them compete in a fun … but competitive [environment.] This year is our biggest Tournament of Champions ever,” he said.

The Army was represented well during this year’s NetWars competition, said Matthew O’Rouke, an intelligence specialist with the 782nd Military Intelligence Battalion (Cyber) at Fort Gordon, Georgia.

As the team captain of “Nation_State_Alchemy,” O’Rouke was joined by Sgt. Andrew Beat, a cyber-operations specialist assigned to the 782nd MI Bn., and Carl Peterson, Chris Maloney, and Neil Klissus, Department of Defense civilians within the U.S. Cyber Command community.

During the competition, O’Rouke and his team huddled over their laptops as they launched a series of attacks or bolstered their defenses during the “castle versus castle,” part of the competition, also known as “level five.” Teams had three hours to increase their scores from the previous day of competition.

The day prior, Nation_State_Alchemy quickly sailed thought the first four levels of the competition to be amongst the first to reach level five. The initial stages included a series of cyber-related exercises that increased in difficulty and corresponded with a fictional-based scenario, O’Rouke said.

At level five, participants set up and managed their “castle” — a virtual server — during a capture-the-flag-type competition, O’Rouke said. In each castle, teams managed four Linux- and four Windows-based services, which included a “digital-text string,” known as their flag.

After they set up their castle, teams could then attack another team’s services and take down an enemy’s flag, put up their flag, or even take down a team’s services altogether.

“Ideally you want to automate as much as possible and get your services set up and automatically defended,” Peterson said. “Then you want to get your attacks set up and get them firing automatically against another team’s systems.”

NetWars scoring servers periodically check the status of each castle. Teams are awarded points based on their uptime or the number of flags the team has across the online play space.

Ultimately, Beat said, NetWars turns into this giant “cyber-knife fight.” Teams try to maintain a 100% uptime by defending their castle, as they branch off to try and take over another team’s services.

“There is certainly a potential upside to aggressive play; however, defense is easier to maintain,” Peterson said.

In this competition, understanding how a team exploited a system can provide an ample opportunity to build a proper defense, O’Rouke added. Further, a team can leverage a known weakness to breach another team’s system.

“Attribution is a challenge, just like in the operational environment,” Peterson said. “Based on the types of attacks we are seeing and the data they leave behind — their flag — we can start to associate each of these attacks with different threat actors.”

Through it all, NetWars provided teams an opportunity to practice their techniques, tactics, and procedures in an open-source competition against a real and thinking adversary, Beat said.

“Ten years ago, we started NetWars — and no offense, the U.S. military personnel just did OK,” Skoudis said. “This is U.S. military, and we face some significant adversaries — OK is just not good enough.

“Now, whenever we run a NetWars event, whether it’s the Tournament of Champions or anything else, the U.S. military is well represented among the winners,” he added. “I do think that shows the investment in those skills is paying off, and cyberspace is a dangerous place, and we need our military forces to be ready to defend the country.”

In total, around 500 people participated in this year’s tournament, in varying levels of competition. Nation_State_Alchemy placed third in the event and is planning to apply the lessons learned in future contests. A second joint-Army team, Whiskey_Business, placed fourth in the tournament.

“One big takeaway: no matter how hard you defend, the attackers will go after the weakest link,” Peterson said. “The teams we were up against didn’t focus on us. They focused on the less prepared teams in the play space.”

SERVICES CUP

As Nation_State_Alchemy and Whiskey_Business competed in the Tournament of Champions division, the team “Crabby_Patties,” led by Capt. Michael Milbank, represented the overall Army in the 2019 NetWars Services Cup competition.

Milbank joined other members of the U.S. Army Cyber Command’s Cyber Protection Brigade out of either Fort Gordon or Fort Meade, Maryland, including Capt. Braxton Musgrove, Chief Warrant Officers 2 Michael Edie and Michael Shue, Warrant Officer Christopher Watson, and Staff Sgt. Buffye Battle.

“Being placed in a contested environment with actual adversaries offers us a chance to test new strategies, enhance our tactics, and rehearse our procedures so that we are more effective and adaptive in real-world scenarios,” Milbank said. “Our team is incredibly thankful to SANS for putting together this competition and thankful to the Army for providing the training and opportunity to allow us to be successful.”

Teams representing the Navy, Air Force, the Marine Corps, Coast Guard and National Guard also participated in this year’s competition. The Air Force was the overall winner, followed by the Navy and Coast Guard, respectively.

“The [services] are always competing with each other for fun, so we decided to have a commander’s cup for cyber,” said Daryl Gilbertson, SANS DOD national account manager “The cup travels with the winning team … and it gives the [cyber team] some notoriety. Their names are actually engraved on it … it’s a big deal.”

WEST POINT

Cadets from the Army Cyber Institute at West Point, New York, also participated in this year’s Tournament of Champions. Joining the cadets was their instructor, Capt. Daniel Hawthore, an assistant professor and deputy at the Cyber Research Center, who placed third overall as a first-time solo player.

West Point qualified for this year’s event by beating the other academies during a SANS training event and tournament last spring, Hawthorne said. The team pressed hard and broke into level four before the close of the competition.

“Anybody who sat in one of my classes will tell you I’m very passionate about the field,” Hawthorne said. “I’m watching these cadets take off. They’re going to go further than I have.”

By Devon L. Suits, Army News Service