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From Cyber Awareness to Cybersecurity

Posted: Oct 19, 2021
David Radcliffe and Tally Helfont

In October, the Department of Defense marks Cybersecurity Awareness Month in which it strives to explore the fundamentals of cybersecurity and educate organizations on how to do their part to #BeCyberSmart. From where does the need for this campaign derive?

The United States and its partners are engaged in competition for the future of the information environment:  we seek an internet and communications ecosystem that fosters freedom, creativity, and economic opportunity. Others seek an environment of digital authoritarianism, where the state controls access to information; continually monitors the behavior of citizens; and creates a narrative in cyberspace that only supports the interests of the state. 

We seek to help our partners address the cyber risks to their data, networks, systems, and platforms so that they may operate in a cyber-contested environment with us. We do this by helping them to understand the risks and challenges, but also to capitalize on the opportunities that are afforded to us in the cyberspace domain as members of the community endorsing and supporting the norms of responsible state behavior in cyberspace.

As the Department of Defense’s lead implementer for Institutional Capacity Building (ICB), the Institute for Security Governance offers several courses related to cybersecurity meant to equip participants with the knowledge and skills to understand cyber threats and vulnerabilities, and their consequences for national security and military operations.

These offerings include two in-residence courses at ISG headquarters in Monterey, CA: A four-week Strategy and Capabilities for Cyber Challenges and a two-week Cyber Policy and Practice. The latter residence course can also be offered as one-week intensive, in-country courses taught by ISG’s Mobile Education Teams (METs). Additional one-week MET offerings include: Cybersecurity Strategy Development, and Cyber Defense Operational Integration.

Aside from its educational support to partner nations, allies, and practitioners on cybersecurity, ISG also contributes to the cyber community of interest by convening stakeholders, sharing best practices, and publishing content to further this burgeoning field.

Once such primer aimed at a wide, external audience is the ICB Smart Sheet on Building Capable Cybersecurity Institutions. This Smart Sheet frames the challenges, possibilities, and best practices associated with building partner nation cyber institutions and facilitating greater levels of mission assurance and interoperability with the US.

Check back to ISG’s website or follow ISG on LinkedIn for updates on any additional course offerings or published material on cybersecurity.