Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio officially opened a new cybersecurity facility on July 9. The Air Force said the $1.5 million facility is “essential to protecting weapon systems from cyber threats and mitigating cyber vulnerabilities across the Air Force fighters and bombers fleet.”
Brig. Gen. Heath Collins, program executive officer for fighters and bombers, explained, “We are in an age where we have a very sophisticated threat and an adversary that is really trying to get into all of our systems. This facility is absolutely going to be at the core of how we protect our systems moving forward.”
The base is partnering with the Cyber Resiliency Office for Weapons Systems (CROWS), which also provided funding for the facility. CROWS isn’t stopping with just the Wright-Patterson facility. The organization said it plans to establish development, acquisition, and sustainment centers over the next five years. It said these additional facilities will further help “underscore the organization’s commitment to its overarching mission of increasing the cyber resiliency of weapon systems.”
“Construction of this facility is a key component of the CROWS mission to increase the cyber resiliency of Air Force weapon systems and maintain mission effective capability,” said Joseph Bradley, CROWS director. “It will improve communication, collaboration and allow us to better resolve problems.”
The Air Force is hoping to use the new cyber facility to addresses “ongoing challenges” to “create processes, infrastructure, and capabilities to counter threats to its weapon systems.” With those challenges in mind, the Air Force is “looking at creative ways to forge partnerships and alliances to advance the cyber resiliency of weapon systems by protecting information and eliminating communications barriers.” Specifically, the Air Force said that the new facility will serve as a “collaborative space” for acquisition professionals to learn more about cyber threats – both current and emerging – as well as how to better protect against them.