Army expands cyber footprint, hires more IT pros

There’s a new opportunity for Army personnel working in cybersecurity.

A new occupational specialty, the 25D Cyber Network Defender, is open to staff sergeants, sergeants first class and master sergeants in the active component.

For soldiers currently working in IT or the cyber realm, joining 25D would be a “growth field,” according to Col. Robert Duke, chief of the operations support division at the Officer Personnel Management Directorate, where the new cyber branch is being established.

Expansion of 25D hinges on an elevated need to defend networks because of the “increased pace of technology and the increase of the threat we see in the cyber world,” Duke said.


Soldiers in the military occupational specialty “will protect against unauthorized activity in the cyberspace domain and perform assessments of threats and vulnerabilities within the network environment,” according to military personnel.

“The cyber branch will ensure all soldiers — officer, warrant officer and enlisted performing cyber-duties — receive the same quality professional development they have come to expect from HRC,” Duke said. “We will be the cyber soldier’s contact for assignment, training and promotions.”

Soldiers in all MOSs should consider applying for 25D if they are interested in this type of assignment, said Jim Bragg, chief of the retention and reclassification branch. Typically, rules for getting into 25D “have been relaxed;” normally only soldiers in “overstrength” MOSs are allowed into MOSs with shortages like this one, Bragg added.

No decision has been made yet as to how big the MOS will be. Formal training begins this summer.

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