DVIDS – News – The National Guard’s Next Big Mission – Opinion Piece on Critical Infrastructure Protection by Maj. Gen. William “Bill” Crane, Adjutant General – West Virginia


This year, like all recent years, cyberattacks continue to leverage billions of dollars, account for countless hours of wasted time, and undermine customer trust in organizations and markets. These are deliberate and malicious attacks on our way of life, our society and our nation.

Since 2021, there have been nearly 100 major cyberattacks worldwide. Rogue actors like China, Russia, and North Korea are testing vulnerabilities in the systems we use every day in America — our gasoline pipelines, our hospitals, our water treatment plans, and our power grid. are vulnerable to digital-physical attacks. The next attack we face could be devastating to our country and our way of life. Unlike a war where the military deploys beyond our country’s borders to fight for the freedom we hold dear, cyberattacks have the potential to affect the homes and lives of every American.

Currently, we see these types of attacks taking place in Eastern Europe, with Russia exploiting the interconnectedness of people, governments and institutions. Cyber ​​and critical infrastructure vulnerabilities are being studied as targets of these nefarious actors here in the United States and abroad.

Our best defense as a nation is to take steps to identify vulnerabilities, protect our critical infrastructure, and prevent these costly attacks rather than responding to them once the damage is done. Along the same lines, states need to think outside the box, as we did in West Virginia, to engage universities, government entities, technology sectors, and leaders to address this growing threat.

We as a nation must be prepared and there is no one better to take on this mission than the men and women of the National Guard. Today’s National Guard has powerful capabilities, like in West Virginia, where National Guard cyber experts identify critical infrastructure vulnerabilities and enhance cyber defenses and resilience to limit future threats across states. -United.

The National Guard needs Critical Infrastructure Protection forces in every state capable of performing the task of cyber protection and defense to assist governors across the United States. The West Virginia National Guard now has this capability and stands ready, through its Army Interagency Education and Training Center (AITEC), to provide the necessary training and expertise to each of the 54 states and territories.

Just as the nation relies on National Guardsmen in times of national disaster, now is the time to employ these citizen soldiers and airmen to help identify and mitigate these cyber threats to the nation’s infrastructure.

For more information, contact West Virginia National Guard Public Affairs at: 304-561-6689 or email: [email protected]

Date taken: 04.08.2022
Date posted: 04.08.2022 12:48
Story ID: 418133
Location: CHARLESTON, West Virginia, USA

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