FORT MEADE, Md. — U.S. CYBERCOM is saying “Watch out, China and Russia!” because the new faces of cyber warfare lethality are hot shots Jeff and Tina, fresh from their renowned service with the DOD Cyber Challenge.
Jeff made his mark as a Challenge information technology specialist who remotely monitored employee activities.
“He never tired of watching what employees did at their desks, day or night, even only a few hours after their arrival on first duty day,” says CYBERCOM Deputy Commander Vice Adm. Ross Myers. “It wasn’t weird at all.”
Jeff’s duties included frequently interrupting employees to remedy security issues or offering slightly positive reinforcement. Officials call his experience a rare combination of senior level technical expertise, communication skills, and values-driven performance.
“He stayed at his desk so much he rarely had time to shave or change out of his blue sweater vest,” said Myers.
Tina demonstrated expertise with defeating security measures and sharing illegal music files. Myers said, “those skills are cyber warfare gold.” Some employees claimed that Tina spent most of her time at lunch or stalking co-workers through social media.
“Sure that looked odd,” Myers says, “but she made thousands of new workers feel welcome while mastering firewall-breaking and finding social media vulnerabilities. That adds up to executive level leadership, coalition building, and business acumen.”
Jeff and Tina’s senior qualifications include being highly skilled with disrupting work and demanding attention. Whereas Jeff unimaginatively enforced regulations, Tina seemed to ignore their existence. Myers notes, “Considering all that, they’ve been acting like senior executives for years.”
“Everybody in the DOD knows that you can’t accomplish jack on networks until you get through Jeff and Tina,” Myers reports. “Now adversaries can also hate facing those two, just like every DOD employee has for years.”
Tina says she plans to initiate a music file sharing club that will meet in the CYBERCOM food court for pretty much all day.
Jeff intends to start improving headquarters network security by checking into Tina’s music download activity.
“I should have done that years ago, frankly,” he said.