From U.S. 4th Fleet Public Affairs
U.S. 4th Fleet on March 21 concluded a weeklong cyber security inspection by a team from U.S. Fleet Cyber Command, earning a passing score on its first attempt.
The inspection was a comprehensive, graded evaluation of all cyber security areas, including leadership engagement, physical security, administration, training and network configuration. U.S. 4th Fleet was recognized for excellent leadership engagement and received no deductions for culture or conduct.
Further, U.S. 4th Fleet leaders made a point of learning from the inspection team, said its officer in charge, Capt. Larry Flint.
"They said, 'We've done our best, and we think we're ready, but don't pull any punches,' and we certainly didn't," Flint said.
The inspection team's report to the fleet included several recommendations for improvement, as well as praise for good work.
Before the inspection, U.S. 4th Fleet leaders conducted a critical self-assessment, Flint said. Determining that a computer system in their Maritime Operations Center was no longer needed, they eliminated it.
"Besides reducing your vulnerability footprint, it allowed your team to focus on what does matter to you: improving your information assurance posture and making it sustainable," he said.
Capt. Steve Shinego, the U.S. 4th Fleet chief of staff, accepted the inspection team's report.
"As you walked from building to building, I hope you found the same desire to do what was right - not just be inspection-ready," he said. "The real goal is to learn what good habits and what good practices we should be using to safeguard ourselves against adversaries - so we're keeping Sailors and Marines safer downrange."
Passing the inspection was a win for U.S. 4th Fleet, but the right type of winner has humility and a desire for constant improvement, he said.
U.S. 4th Fleet's communications and information systems directorate is led by Cmdr. Bradley Maas, who expressed thanks to his Navy colleagues, including other fleet communications and information systems directors, and to his staff for their support.
Within the U.S. 4th Fleet directorate, "We really had to ramp it up," Maas said. "These guys did it, and I really can't say enough about that team.
He is especially proud of the members of his team achieving 100 percent completion of its Cyber Security Work Force training certification, Maas said.
"Those are difficult certifications to accomplish, especially with the mix of ratings we have in our shop," he said.
Among the missions of the Fort Meade, Md.-based U.S. Fleet Cyber Command is to direct, operate, maintain, secure and defend the Navy's portion of the global information grid. In 2011, it established the inspection program with the goal of minimizing vulnerabilities to attacks.