52nd CBCS Cyber Security: Airmen on virtual frontlines

  • Published
  • By Kisha Foster Johnson
  • 78th Air Base Wing Public Affairs Office

Protecting Air Force intel from adversaries is a 24/7 job for the 52nd Combat Communications Squadron’s Cyber Security section at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia.

These Cyber Security specialists are responsible for preventing, detecting and fighting off cyber attacks. They ensure the security of computer networks and online communications are safe via programming to hardware.

“We handle network operation servers, provide server maintenance and establish domains,” said Tech. Sgt. Mathew Myer, 52nd CBCS noncommissioned officer in charge of cyber systems operations. “Domain controllers are what we use to validate your identity through the Common Access Card when an employee is trying to log in on the Air Force network computer.

“We are the ones who help establish accounts on the system and align that information with what is on the CAC,” Myer continued.

Because many of the Air Force’s command and controls systems are directly tied to computer systems, cyber security specialists are on guard as current and future battles are fought in cyberspace.

“I supervise a group of Airmen who are responsible for cyber security for what is essentially portable servers,” said Master Sgt. Marlon Floyd, 52nd CBCS noncommissioned officer in charge of Cyber Security Shop. “We also maintain base-level functions to make sure there is no mix up of classified and non-classified information and educate Airmen on best security practices to not fall for phishing attempts.”

Floyd said regular system checks alerts the team to security issues or vulnerabilities that need to be addressed and fixed.

“We are constantly making sure these servers are ready for deployment because we can be called out at any moment,” said Floyd. “There have been times while deployed that attempts have been made by different groups to get in the Air Force system and we were able to stop them from being successful. Having that responsibility is pretty intense because it is so extremely important.”