DISA’s EOC Shines at Annual Cyber Flag Exercises

The Defense Information Systems Agency’s new Enterprise Operations Center played a big role in the 3rd annual U.S. Cyber Command-sponsored joint exercise Cyber Flag 14-1 The training exercise was held at Nellis Air Force Base the first week in November. The joint exercise is designed to test the knowledge and skills of cyber professionals from across the Department of Defense through a comprehensive array of realistic attack scenarios in a virtual environment. DISA used the exercise to validate tactics, techniques, and procedures for the Joint Information Environment (JIE), cyber C2, operational processes, coordination, and reporting. Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Kevin Slater, USCYBERCOM and NSA senior enlisted leader, hailed this years exercise a success saying, “There was an exponential advancement of this year’s exercise in terms of depth and breadth of complexity and realism.” The DISA team’s work to implement the EOC into the exercise was a big part of that advancement. DISA conducted two mini flag exercises of its own in preparation for Cyber Flag 14. According to Army COL Richard B. Price, commander of DISA Europe, assessing capabilities during those exercises enabled the agency to implement immediate improvements. “During Mini Flag 1 [held in July], it became evident that we needed to further define command relationships; tactics, techniques, and procedures; C2 lines of authority, and reporting responsibilities,” said Price. “By the time Mini Flag 2 took place in September, we had implemented new processes and procedures to more effectively align support relationships, information flow, roles, and responsibilities.” Marine Maj Leonard J. Le Vine, chief of the Exercises Branch at DISA Europe said, “Cyber Flag 14 provided an opportunity for DISA to demonstrate capabilities as an enterprise service provider and a leader in operating and defending DoD Information Networks within a Joint Information Environment.”