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NEWS | Sept. 18, 2023

Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade Supports 2nd Infantry Division During Ulchi Freedom Shield 23 Exercise

By Capt. Jevon Thomas, U.S. Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade

The Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade (ARCPB) successfully supported the 2nd Infantry Division (2ID) C6 directorate in a critical operational support exercise from August 12 to September 2, 2023, as part of the annual Ulchi Freedom Shield 23 (UFS23) exercise.

ARCPB Soldiers worked side-by-side with their 2ID Active-Duty counterparts, focusing on enhancing the operational effectiveness, capabilities, and partnership between the two units. A key achievement was establishing initial DCO-IDM support, including hunting for anomalies, assessing effectiveness of actions taken, and recommending network hardening technical implementations. This bolstered DCO capability ensures that Cyber forces remain prepared to counter evolving threats across the Cyber domain for 2ID.

Furthermore, standard operating procedures (SOPs) were developed to facilitate seamless integration for future training activities and exercises. This foundation will support future efforts to guarantee continuous operational integration between ARCPB and 2ID in times of crisis.

Lt. Col. Jon Cecilio, the Brigade S3 and senior Leader from ARCPB noted, "The collaboration between ARCPB and 2ID C6 was unparalleled. The progress made during this exercise not only strengthened 2ID's Cyber defenses but also cemented the bond between our units."

Master Sgt. Sondgeroth, Senior Enlisted Leader from the Western Cyber Protection Center, reflected on the opportunity the exercise presented, saying, "This experience offered our Reserve Soldiers invaluable exposure beyond traditional reserve roles. With many of our Soldiers being industry Leaders in Cyber, we bring unique industry standard insights to enrich our Active-Duty counterparts’ capabilities."

During the intense 20-day period, the team operated 24-hour shifts to ensure exercise objectives were met, overcoming challenges to provide impeccable Cyber support - a goal achieved successfully.

Crucial to this achievement were Cyber professionals from 189 Cyber Protection Team, notably Chief Warrant Officer 2 Baumann, Capt. Hines, Maj. Lee, 1st Lt. Zhang, 1st Lt. Roach and Sgt. Mata.

This exercise proves the prowess, tenacity, and resilience of ARCPB's Cyber warriors in providing DCO-IDM and Palo Alto training support to bolster 2ID's Cyber defenses and foster partnership.

The overarching end state of ARCPB successfully conducting DCO-IDM operations to enhance 2ID's capabilities and partnership was achieved. An After-Action Review (AAR) will refine strategies, techniques, and procedures from this exercise to support future requirements.

The collaboration sets the tone for future Joint operations, reinforcing the United States' commitment to its partners.

For more information, contact ARCPB at usarmy.usarc.arcpb.mesg.general-inquiries@army.mil or via Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/USARCYBER/.

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