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NEWS | June 7, 2022

Guard Soldiers, Airmen Participate in Cyber Shield Exercise

By Capt. Clarissa Estrada and Lt. Col. Bradford Leighton, Joint Force Headquarters - Illinois National Guard Public Affairs

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – More than 800 National Guard Soldiers and Airmen, civilian experts, and other military services from throughout the nation are conducting exercise Cyber Shield this month with partners from all levels of government. 

Cyber Shield is the nation’s premier unclassified cyber training exercise. 

With the United States and its allies under attack every day in cyberspace, the National Guard plays an important role in protecting critical networks, including the DoDIN, the Department of Defense system.

“The cyber skills that many members of the National Guard bring to the fight are unique within the Department of Defense and can be brought to bear in protecting the military’s own networks,” said George Battistelli, the Cyber Shield 2022 exercise director and deputy chief information officer for the Army National Guard. “As current world events show, our ability to protect U.S. military networks and conduct hybrid warfare is crucial in protecting the nation as a whole.”

This year the exercise runs from June 5-17 at The Army National Guard Professional Education Center on Camp Joseph T. Robinson Maneuver Training Center, North Little Rock, Arkansas. 

The exercise, conducted at the unclassified level to allow greater participation, is a result of the National Guard’s commitment to defend critical infrastructure from the growing threat of cyber assaults. 

The mission of Cyber Shield is to develop, train and exercise cyber forces in the areas of computer network internal defensive measures and cyber incident response. These capabilities facilitate National Guard cyber teams’ abilities to conduct missions to coordinate, train and assist federal, state and industry network owners that are threatened by cyberattack.

Leading cyber defense industry trainers will conduct training courses for exercise participants such as Security+, Linux+, CISSP and more. Then, a cyber range test will test the capabilities of the nation’s cyber defenders.