WARREN – On Friday at the Detroit Arsenal, U.S. Army TARDEC, Merit Network and the Michigan Defense Center unveiled the latest addition to the Michigan Cyber Range, the fourth in Michigan.
The TARDEC Cyber Hub grand opening included a tour of the new cyber range and a live, virtual Capture the Flag exercise with TARDEC employees
“We’re passionate about bringing to our Warfighters the most adaptable, flexible, modular and smart capabilities current technology can provide to their ground vehicles, and that includes protection of those vehicles and their components from cyber-attack,” says Jeff Jaczkowski, TARDEC’s Associate Director for Ground Systems Cyber Engineering. “Opening up a hub in the Michigan Cyber Range right here at TARDEC allows us to accelerate our automotive cybersecurity efforts through enhanced training and virtual testing and its dividends will pay off for years for the soldiers in the field.”
Cyber Range Hubs establish Michigan as the national epicenter for security training and workforce development. Hub sites host events, exercises, and training classes. Statewide hubs operate as a physical extension of the Michigan Cyber Range, the nation’s largest unclassified cyber range. The hubs offer more than forty industry-recognized certifications, exercises and workshops aimed at qualifying individuals for positions and contracts in cybersecurity fields.
This new hub will allow TARDEC employees to access lab-based experiential learning and certification for all compliance requirements and frameworks, including NIST, NICE, NSA, DoD 8570. In addition, these employees will be able to participate in live security attack and defense exercises to benchmark skills across the cybersecurity spectrum.
“The hub at TARDEC is a part of a key focus in the State of Michigan that creates an environment of increased cyber capabilities and learning, it is a culmination of years of strategic planning and a vision of creating a collaborative of hubs that will connect cyber resources across the State,” said Major General Michael A. Stone, Assistant Adjutant General, Michigan National Guard.
The expansion of the Michigan Cyber Range, powered by Merit, is a critical strategy included in the 2015 Michigan Cyber Initiative, spearheaded by Governor Snyder. As a state-run test program that hones security software and cyber defense skills, the Michigan Cyber Range offers cyber exercises, product testing, digital forensics, and more than 40 professional certifications based on the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) framework.
“The Cyber Range Hub at TARDEC gives Department of Defense employees and contractor’s access to world class, hands-on training in their backyard,” said Dr. Joe Adams, Merit’s Vice President for Research and Cyber Security. “Not only can they continue their cyber security education with classes and seminars, but participating in the Cyber Range’s exercises allows employees to keep their skills finely honed by practicing against live, adapting adversaries. This partnership is a great opportunity for Merit, Michigan, and TARDEC and I’m sure it will have an immediate positive impact on the area’s workforce.”
Since 2015, the Michigan Defense Center/MEDC has provided funding for cyber ranges in Battle Creek, Macomb Oakland University Incubator in Sterling Heights, Pinckney Community High School and Wayne State University. An expansion project is underway to bring new hubs to additional regions throughout Michigan. These Hubs serve as centers for the cyber ecosystem within their communities.
“In Governor Snyder’s Protect & Grow initiative, the Michigan Defense Center is executing against one of the key objectives, which is to lead the nation in Department of Defense/State Cyber Operations Integration. The State of Michigan is without a doubt one of the leaders nationwide when it comes to integrating both the state and federal government in cyber operations. The opening of this fifth range at the Detroit Arsenal is just another example of Michigan leadership and dedication to making cybersecurity a priority,” stated Sean Carlson, Executive Director of the Michigan Defense Center/MEDC.
“Michigan has been focused on creating innovative solutions to prevent and respond to cyber threats, including building a holistic “cyber ecosystem” in which both the public and private sectors work collaboratively,” said Sarah Tennant, strategic advisory in cyber initiatives at the MEDC. “This next installment in the range continues the development of a robust cybersecurity community focused on connecting the interests of the cyber, automotive, defense and aerospace industries.”