Maryland National Air Guard to Build a New Cyber Center

In a move that reflects the National Guard’s expanding role in the nation’s cyber defenses, the 175th Wing of the Maryland Air National Guard has announced plans to build a cyber/intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance facility to house a network warfare group and ISR squadron. 

In a presolicitation notice, the wing, located at Warfield Air National Guard Base in Baltimore, said it plans to issue a request for proposals for a two-story, 27,500 square-foot structure to accommodate its cyber program, with 70 percent of the building space to be considered a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility.

The wing said its cyber mission is to “enable the cyber operational need for an always-on, net-speed awareness and integrated operational response with global reach,” the presolicitation states. “It enables operators to drive upstream in pursuit of cyber adversaries, and is informed 24/7 by intelligence and all-source information.”

This is not the first time this same Guard unit has sought such a facility. Nearly exactly a year ago, the 175th issued an almost identical presolicitation, which it later cancelled.

The Defense Department is giving high priority to building up its cyber mission force, with the Guard and Reserves playing a large role. “Throughout the course of this strategy, DoD will draw on the National Guard and Reserve Components as a resource for expertise and to foster creative solutions to cybersecurity problems,”  according to DOD’s cyber strategy.

“There’s a great untapped, not yet fully tapped resource … which is our Guard and Reserve” that will help DOD utilize “the best technology embedded in our military – defending [the network] so that others can’t disrupt it or exploit it, using cyber offensively as necessary and required,” Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said at a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing in May.


Source: Defense Systems