The DoD IAT Level 2 Overview

The Department of Defense (DoD) Directive 8570 can be specifically defined as follows: “. . . . guidance and procedures for the training, certification, and management of the DoD workforce conducting Information Assurance functions in assigned duty positions. It also provides guidance on reporting metrics.” (SOURCE: 1)

It is important to note that the DoD workforce, in general, includes the following:

  1. Military employees (active or reserve);
  2. Civilian employees;
  3. Contractors (or any other affiliated 3rd parties.

The specific DoD departments that are impacted by this Directive is examined in the next section. This article focuses on Level 2, which emphasizes networking.

Overview Job-Related Functions

At present, there are three levels of the DoD Directive 8570, and Level 2 (this also requires mastery of the knowledge base that is required in Level 1) currently focuses upon the network environment infrastructure at the DoD, if it involves, in particular, the following job functions:

  • Providing end user support (such as difficulties or any issues that are involved with accessing shared resources either directly at the place of work or remotely).
  • Managing end-user accounts (for example, this would involve creating the usernames and passwords for both the Federal Government employees and any contractors; establishing the appropriate permissions to access the network resources; making sure that the Virtual Private Networks are fully functional and securing the established lines of network communications in order to safeguard the data packets; creating the appropriate permissions for those employees who are remote, etc).
  • Analyzing system performance (this would include examining the performance of the various servers and making sure that they are operating at peak levels of performance; making sure that all required software upgrades and patches are installed onto them; ascertaining network throughput when employees access the shared resources on the various drives are both optimal and safe levels; detecting any anomalies in network traffic [which would be indicative of a potential Cyber-attack, etc.).

It should be noted that the DoD Directive 8750 Level 2 impacts the following the following employees and contractors working for any of the following Federal Government agencies:

  1. Office of the Secretary of Defense;
  2. Military Departments;
  3. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff;
  4. Combatant Commands;
  5. Office of the Inspector General of the DoD;
  6. Defense Agencies;
  7. DoD Field Activities;
  8. All other organizational entities in the DoD.

(SOURCE: 2)

The Requirements of the DoD IAT Level 2

At this level, the DoD requires that the individual, regardless of whether they are a direct Federal Government employee, a contractor, a civilian, or military personnel, must achieve at least two levels of certifications must be attained, which include the following:

  1. Compliance:

    This can be an Information Assurance related type of certification.

  2. Computing Environment:

    The type of certification that is required here is dependent upon the specific IAT level that the employee is working at present. Also, another key factor here is the type of IT related hardware equipment that the employee is using to conduct his or her everyday job functions, as well as the software applications. For DoD IAT Level 2, the two required certs are as follows:

  • CompTIA Security+;
  • SSCP (Systems Security Certified Practitioner).

Other security-related certs that are accepted (in addition to the above two certs) as well for the DoD IAT Level 2 include the following as well:

  • CCNA Security;
  • CySA+;
  • GICSP;
  • GSEC.

More information about the specific requirements can also be found on the FAQ page of the DoD’s Information Assurance Support Environment website. It can be accessed here. An overview of each cert just reviewed is provided in the next section.

The DoD IAT Level 2 Certs

  1. The CCNA Security:

    This cert covers the knowledge and the skills that are related to:

  • The fundamentals of networking;
  • Local Area Networks (LANs);
  • The various types and kinds of LAN based switching technologies;
  • The different kinds of network protocols focusing primarily upon those of the IPv4 and IPV6 Routing Technologies;
  • The Wide Area Network (WAN) Technologies;
  • Infrastructure Services and Security;
  • The Management of the Information Technology Infrastructure.

Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

  1. The CySA+:

    This cert stands for “Cybersecurity Analyst,” and it covers the skills and knowledge that are associated with the following:

  • Firewall Technology;
  • Critical examination of Cybersecurity based analytics (for example, reviewing log files from servers);
  • The ability to conduct various kinds of data analysis to positively confirm any security weaknesses, threats, or vulnerabilities that are posed to a business or a corporation;
  • The ability to configure and deploy various kinds of network-based, threat detection tools;
  • The know-how in securing software-based applications in the entity.

Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

  1. The GICSP:

    This cert stands for the “Global Industrial Cyber Security Professional,” and examines the following topics:

  • An understanding of Industrial Control Systems;
  • The Cyber threats that are associated with Process Control Systems;
  • How to conduct thorough Security Audits;
  • A complete grasp of the different kinds of Network Defense Architectures;
  • The ability to use End Point Detection Systems;
  • The depth of the Incident Response Skills;
  • The various Governance Models and related resources.

Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

  1. The GSEC:

    This cert is the GIAC Security Essentials, and it covers the following subject areas:

  • Linux OS Security (Permissions/Access; Hardening; Attack Detection; Security Utilities);
  • Cloud and Virtualization Security;
  • Network Device Security;
  • Wireless Networking/Protocols/Communications Security;
  • Logical Access Controls;
  • Security Policy Framework;
  • Penetration Testing;
  • Fundamentals of Cryptography;
  • Incident Response/Handling;
  • Windows OS (Access Control/Security Policy/Network Services/Auditing/Forensics.

Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

  1. The Security+:

    This cert is probably one of the most popular ones and is widely viewed as a key stepping stone to get more specialized certs in Cybersecurity. In general, it covers the following topics:

    Ethical Hacking Training – Resources (InfoSec)

  • The latest techniques as well as trends as it relates to:
    • Risk Management;
    • Risk Mitigation;
    • Threat Management;
    • Intrusion Detection.
  • The techniques and concepts as it relates to Penetration Testing.

Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

  1. The SSCP:

    This cert stands for the Systems Security Certified Practitioner. It covers the following domains:

  • Domain 1:

    Access Control, from the network access/authentication/identity management perspectives.

  • Domain 2:

    Security Operations, which include Controls, Asset Management, Change Management, as well as Physical-based Security Operations.

  • Domain 3:

    Risk Management, which involves security assessment and monitoring systems.

  • Domain 4:

    Incident Response/Recovery, which covers forensics and Business Continuity Planning.

  • Domain 5:

    All of the principles and techniques involved with Cryptography, including that of the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI).

  • Domain 6:

    This is about Network Communications Security, ranging from the various configurations to the attacks and their appropriate countermeasures.

  • Domain 7:

    This covers Systems and Applications Security, focusing upon virtual security and cloud-based environments.

    Preparation tools for this cert from the Infosec Institute can be seen here.

The Common Job Titles

The following matrix exhibits the typical job titles and their associated pay range for the DoD IAT Level 2.

Job Title Salary Level
Systems Administrator $75,320.00
Network Engineer $77,960.00
System Engineer $96,369.00
Network Administrator $70,883.00
Network Specialist $59,930.00
Site Lead Army CoE $63,520.00
Senior Systems Administrator $80,444.00
Information Security Analyst $84,594.00
Help Desk Analyst $34,732.00
IT Security Specialist $119,450.00

(SOURCE: https://www.simplyhired.com/salaries-k-iat-level-ii-jobs.html)

Based upon an analysis of this matrix, it appears that those job titles which command the highest salary levels include the following:

  • Administrator;
  • Engineer;
  • Analyst;
  • Specialist.

The average salary for an employee at the DoD IAT Level 2 is at $71,180.00

Conclusions

Overall, this article has provided an overview into what the DoD IAT Level 2 is, its related job functions, requirements, the needed IT Security based certs, and the job titles/pay range at this level.

Sources

  1. http://www.informit.com/blogs/blog.aspx?uk=What-is-DoD-Directive-8570-and-Why-Should-I-Care
  2. https://www.giac.org/certifications/dodd-8570
  3. https://www.imgva.com/8570-requirements/
  4. https://www.infotectraining.com/blog/what-are-the-dod-information-assurance-traning-requirements
  5. https://www.simplyhired.com/salaries-k-iat-level-ii-jobs.html