Air Force Space Command to Add 1,000 Cyber Pros

The agency already has 6,000 cyber professionals involved in operating, defending, exploiting, and attacking, according to the unit's chief.

The Air Force Space Command's leader said Jan. 17 that it expects to add 1,000 new employees, mainly civilians, to its base of about 6,000 cyber professionals during fiscal year 2014.

"Cyber Command is in the midst of determining how they are going to operate across all the geographic combatant commands as well as internal to the United States," Air Force Gen. William L. Shelton said in a DoD online news report. "And it looks like we will be tapped for well over 1,000 additional people into the cyber business, so you can see [cyber] is starting to take root."

The 24th Air Force, under Air Force Space Command, includes the 67th Network Warfare Wing and the 688th Information Operations Wing at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas and the 689th Combat Communications Wing at Robins Air Force Base in Georgia.

"I have the responsibility of major command headquarters, but in terms of where the work really gets done to operate and defend Air Force networks, to provide exploitation capabilities, and develop attack capabilities, that's the 24th Air Force," he said. "“They are also the Air Force component to U.S. Cyber Command, so when U.S. Cyber Command wants Air Force capability or wants capabilities the Air Force has developed, that's where they go.

"The cyber domain -- I call it the Wild West because you can be anywhere and do anything and be effective," he continued. "All you need is an Internet connection, the right skills, and a laptop, and you're in the game."

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