Functional Mission Analysis for Cyber Squadron Initiative — A Collaborative Project

Colorado Springs — The Air Force’s CyberWorx program at USAFA, working in conjunction with C-TRAC, will be facilitating a weeklong design sprint to assist the Air Force in developing a robust and repeatable Functional Mission Analysis process for their new Cyber Squadrons. This sprint will be a collaborative effort between military, academia and industry leaders and will enable Air Force Cyber Squadrons to posture more effectively against cyber vulnerabilities to its core missions and critical infrastructure by identifying mission-related cyber dependencies.

The Air Force’s Cyber Squadrons, formerly known as Communications Squadrons, traditionally focus on enterprise communications delivery and technical support. Now, as the squadrons transition their focus to cyber operations, they require standarized tactics, tools, and methods to highlight key terrain in cyberspace and identify expanding cyber vulnerabilities. The result of the design thinking sprint will be concepts for a dependable and repeatable process known as Functional Mission Analysis (FMA) and standardized training for applying FMA at Air Force bases worldwide.

Lt Col Billy Pope, Chief of the Cyberspace Strategy Branch at the Air Staff, gave an example why standardized FMA is essential for Air Force missions: “When a fighter jet departs the runway to engage targets with precision weaponry, the safety and success of that mission is dependent on maintenance, medical, and flight planning systems, onboard diagnostics, and navigation networks to name but a few cyber dependencies. Today’s cyber Airmen must be able to identify these key terrain features in cyberspace through a repeatable process that identifies where our missions are most dependent, most vulnerable, most threatened.”

Industry leaders who wish to contribute to this collaborative design course are encouraged to begin the process by filling out the CyberWorx application form at https://c-trac.org. Ideal candidates will be selected from the following areas of industry: Logistics and Distribution, Multi-unit Enterprises, Energy, Financial Services, Transportation, Data Analytics, and Intelligence. Benefits of participating include interfacing with Air Force leadership and the Air Force Institute of Technology, building relationships with others in commercial industry, and contributing to future Air Force Instructional Manuals and policy.

C-TRAC is a 501(c)(3) located on the Catalyst Campus in Colorado Springs supporting the vision of CyberWorx by partnering industry with the CyberWorx program for the facilitation of technology transfer and transition.