Developing the next generation of cyberspace defense operators is an urgent national need. CAP cadets are rising to the challenge through self-study, classroom lessons and activities, competitions, and week-long career exploration academies.
Cyber Badge Program
To encourage cadet participation in CAP’s cyber education programs, cadets may earn the Cadet Cyber Badge which recognizes a cadet's dedication to cyber education. To learn more, download the pamphlet (PDF) and use the tracking log (XLSX) to keep track of the cadet's progress in the program.
Air Force Association CyberCamps
The Air Force Association has CyberCamps through the summer for groups to introduce students to cyber security concepts and prepare them for their first CyberPatriot competition. They have a basic camp as well as an advanced camp. The basic camp is for students and cadets who have no previous cyber security or CyberPatriot experience while the advanced camp is for students who have some experience and want to learn additional concepts.
Through an agreement between the Air Force Association and Civil Air Patrol, CAP can offer squadrons, groups, wings or regions the opportunity to host an AFA Basic CyberCamp the week of 29 July through 2 August at no cost (for the electronic camp material) to the squadron, group, wing or region. The camp would be responsible for minimal printing cost for the cadet material.
The camp is designed around a four hour day with lecture material and hands on lab learning Monday through Thursday. Friday is a mini CyberPatriot competition designed to reinforce the material that was learned during the week.
Individual camps would be required to secure computers, Internet connectivity, and facilities for their own camp. They also would be required to provide their own instructors who would use the provided material. The camp is a good way for new teams to get involved in CyberPatriot as well as for experienced teams to give new cadets and introduction to cyber security and CyberPatrot.
Note that the week of 29 July is the only week for which this offer is made. If a CAP unit wanted to hold a CyberCamp on another of the AFA camp weeks, they they would need to register and pay for the camp themselves. If someone was wanting to host an Advanced CyberCamp, they would need to register and pay for the camp themselves.
If you or someone else within CAP would be interested in hosting a camp for your location the week of 29 July, please send an email to Maj Bill Blatchley at firstname.lastname@example.org to reserve your camp slot. More details will come later to those interested in this program. You can email Maj Blatchley if you have any questions that are not addressed herein.
More information on the AFA CyberCamp program can be found at: https://www.uscyberpatriot.
CyberPatriot puts teams of high school and middle school students in the position of newly hired IT professionals tasked with managing the network of a small company. In the rounds of competition, teams are given a set of virtual images that represent operating systems and are tasked with finding cybersecurity vulnerabilities within the images and hardening the system while maintaining critical services in a six hour period. The top teams in the nation earn all-expenses paid trips to Baltimore, MD for the National Finals Competition where they can earn national recognition and scholarship money.
- Audience: Cadets, working in teams of 6
- CyberPatriot Playbook: An introduction into CyberPatriot operations from the perspective of Civil Air Patrol Cyber Programs.
- CyberPatriot Coaches Meetings: Recorded CyberPatriot Coaches Meetings led by Maj Bill Blatchley; contact email@example.com for more information.
Cyber Defense Training Academy
The Cyber Defense Training Academy (CDTA) introduces cadets to career opportunities in defensive cyberspace operations. Topics include: introduction into networks and operating systems, workstation and server fundamentals, how to secure a system and mitigate threats. An advanced course introduces cadets to cryptography, web technology security, intrusion detection systems, and basic mission planning. CDTA is part of the National Cadet Special Activities program and includes three courses:
- Cyberspace Familiarization Course (CFC): is an introduction into cyberspace operations conducted by the United States Air Force. Members from various units within the 24th Air Force will brief cadets on their roles as a "Cyberspace Operator" and share their experiences as a USAF Airman. Finally, the cadets will receive an introduction into Defensive Cyberspace Operations which includes: introduction into networks and operating systems, workstation and server fundamentals, how to secure a system and mitigate threats. The course will conclude with a capstone activity called the Cyber Defense Competition where cadets will be ordered to secure a network of workstations from possible security breaches. Our goal is to not only prepare cadets to effectively participate in competitions like CyberPatriot and the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition but to usher in a new era of "Cyber Operators" not to train "Hackers."
- Cyberspace Advanced Course (CAC): This course is designed to instruct cadets on more advanced topics regarding cyber-security. Cadets will learn about cryptography, web technology security, how to setup and security Cisco based networks, intrusion detection systems, and basic mission planning.
- Cyberspace Networking Course (CNC): This course is designed to instruct cadets on more advanced topics regarding computer networking. Students will be immersed in networking theory and get the chance to build computer networks using physical networking devices.
- Audience: Cadets who have graduated from encampment
- Format: In-residence, overnight activity, typically 1 week in duration
- For Details: See NCSA homepage
Introduction to Cyber Security - Activity Guide
The Introduction to Cyber Security activity guide introduces cadets to the cyber domain. Topics include codes, ciphers, and encryption; basic defense skills; basic probing skills; cyber organization profiles; cyber domain history; and more. The activity guide may be implemented as a squadron activity or a self-study activity for individual cadets.
- Audience: Cadet class or individual cadets of any grade
- Format: Classroom lectures, activities, readings, and quizzes
- Resource: PDF activity guide
Cyberspace Principles Course
This course is designed to familiarize students with the principles of cyber security and information assurance. Students will learn common terms and definitions along with basic principles like: cryptography, current threats, and ethics. Students will also learn common issues facing youth to include: cyber crime, cyber stalking, and cyber bullying. This course is a prerequisite for the Cyberspace Familiarization Course (NCSA).
Senior members and cadets are encouraged to teach this course at their local squadron, group, wing, or region; however, they must register as an instructor. If you are interested in teaching this course, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and follow this template:
- Subject of Email: Cyberspace Principles Instructor
- Body of Email: Full name of lead instructor with CAPID, full name of other instructor(s) with CAPID, date of the activity, projected number of students, hosting unit (e.g. SWR-TX-007 or MER-MD-001)
All cadet instructors MUST have a senior member mentor during the activity. This mentor should be the lead instructor. If you have any questions, please email us.
Once your course is properly registered, the instructor will receive access to the Google Classroom where the course is hosted and from where cadets can be added as students.
Encampment Module: Introduction to the Cyber Domain
The encampment program's aerospace education block has five main components which includes the Introduction to Cyber Domain (PDF) 60-minute instructional block.
Aerospace Dimensions Cyber Lesson
In development currently, the new Aerospace Dimensions cyber module will be added the requirements for all cadet airmen and cadet non-commissioned officers to complete before they may earn the Billy Mitchell Award. The Cyber Lesson (a.k.a Module 7) will be added to the existing Aerospace Dimension modules, thus removing the "no requirement" for Aerospace as noted currently for Achievement 8.
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