Cyber Protection Team gears up for year-long deployment
Sen. Mike Rounds: Growing need for cyber protection for armed forces
RAPID CITY, S.D. – The South Dakota Army National Guard’s Detachment 2, 174th Cyber Protection Team is gearing up for a 400-day deployment, and Friday morning, they were recognized.
At Camp Rapid, families of the seven guard members deploying and members of the public were in attendance.
Also attending the ceremony was U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds, Maj. Gen. Tim Reisch, the SDNG adjutant general, and Lt. Gov. Matt Michels.
The soldiers will be heading to the Washington, D.C. area to protect critical infrastructure for the U.S. Cyber Command.
Though they will be state-side, families are not allowed to come, and the deployment is treated as if they were overseas.
“We’re expected to fill the deployment order on a 24-hour basis,” said 1st Lt. Chris Wenk, member of the 174th Cyber Protection Team.
The seven soldiers will be part of a 40-member team coming from detachments in North Dakota, Utah and Colorado.
“We’re going to move out there as a team, but while we’re there, we’re all going to be part of different sections so we may not see each other for a week or two at a time,” said Wenk.
Wenk also says there is an increasing need for cyber protection for our armed forces, something that Rounds describes as a big part of what war has become since 2001.
“For these individuals who are going to be going to the East Coast, they will be actively engaging individuals trying to do harm to our forces through the use of cyber materials,” said Rounds.
The soldiers are expected to depart after spending the holidays with their loved ones.