WASHINGTON (March 5, 2015) -- The Army cyber mission force, or CMF, has grown "exponentially since September 2013 with 25 of 41 [planned] teams at initial operating capability," Lt. Gen. Edward C. Cardon told lawmakers, March 4.
"We are on track to have all 41 CMF teams established and operating by the end of fiscal year 2016. However, they will not all be fully operationally capable until FY17," he said. CMF teams are allocated to combatant commanders, where they provide defensive and offensive cyber capabilities.
Cardon, who is the commander of U.S. Army Cyber Command, or ARCYBER, and Second Army, addressed "operationalizing cyberspace" in oral and written testimony. He and his counterparts from the other services appeared before the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Emerging Threats and Capabilities.
GUARD, RESERVE CAPABILITIES
Besides the CMF teams, Cardon said ARCYBER will create "a total, multi-component Army cyber force that includes 21 Reserve-component cyber protection teams, trained to the same standards as the active-component cyber force."
In October 2014, one Army National Guard cyber protection team was activated and is in Title 10 status, he added, meaning those Guard Soldiers are now on active duty.
It is sometimes a bit tricky to get the proper authorities to activate Reserve-component Soldiers, he said.
Authorities are a "complex problem" and "remain a challenge," Cardon said. "While Title 10 authorities are clear, Title 32 and state active duty require the application of varied state constitutional, legislative, and executive authorities and coordination with state agencies and officials."
There is merit in developing a common approach in every state for authorities and capabilities to facilitate a more rapid and effective response in cyberspace operations, he added.
Reserve-component cyber experts are a tremendous resource, he said, pointing out that both Guard and Reserve Soldiers already have the acquired cyber skills that will enable them to integrate more quickly into the cyberspace force than if they had to be trained from scratch.
Guard and Reserve Soldiers routinely augment the active cyberspace force and are supporting missions both here in the United States, as well as overseas, including Afghanistan and other areas in Southwest Asia, he added.