Science and Technology News

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Hanscom's cyber initiatives

by Justin Oakes
66th Air Base Group Public Affairs


7/15/2014 - HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass. -- Today's battlefield is full of ever-changing and constantly evolving threats. In this environment, the Air Force not only defends against enemies in air and space, but also against adversaries within the cyber domain.

Hanscom Air Force Base may not have fighter jets, helicopters or remotely piloted aircraft flying from its runways, but it has a mission all its own. It is a hub for developing the Service's leading cyber programs and other systems that allow U.S. warfighters to collect, process and distribute critical information.

The Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence, also known as C3I, Infrastructure Division is one of several units on base responsible for bringing these cyberspace capabilities to the field.

"Hanscom is host to some of the latest technologies and advancements on the cyber frontier," said Col. Bill Polakowski, C3I Infrastructure senior materiel leader. "The systems and products, which are acquired and tested through our program offices here, safeguard our nation and keep us on the forefront of cyber warfare."

Massachusetts' local and state representatives also recognize the innovation that takes place on base.

A military bond bill was approved in March that authorizes the state to support advancements in cyber and IT testing and integration. A prime example includes improvements being made to the CIEF -- a Hanscom facility that provides a secure environment for testing and integrating IT products.

While the base is home to cyber security centers like the CEIF and an Intranet Control Weapons System Gateway Integration Facility, the majority of cyberspace innovations are in the form of hardware and software technology.

The C3I Division works to acquire, integrate and support products such as the Air Force Portal, cyber weapons systems, theater deployable communications, base IT infrastructure and a cloud brokering service.

Other efforts include fielding an Assured Compliance Assessment Solution, a network scanner that searches for computer threats; Installation Processing Nodes, data centers that can host local applications and services, and Joint Regional Security Stacks, a multi-service/agency effort focused on providing a boundary solution that is common across all services.

Over the course of the next several months, Hanscom will be highlighting many of these initiatives individually.

"When dealing with cyber weapons and defenses, it can be a bit hard to explain," Polakowski said. "But, I look forward to showcasing the great advancements that take place here to the community. I want them to understand exactly what Hanscom brings to the fight."

Editor's note: This is the first of a series depicting Air Force cyberspace initiatives.

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