DoD 8570

Introduction to the DoD Cyber Workforce Framework (DCWF)

October 26, 2020 by Greg Belding

Introduction

In response to the ever-changing world, including the increased focus on cyberspace as a theater of war, the US Department of Defense (DoD) decided that it was time to make the necessary changes to ensure operational superiority in the new age of warfare. To this end, DoD launched the DoD Cyber Workforce Framework (DCWF). 

This article will detail the DoD Cyber Workforce Framework and will explore what it is, its purpose and who it is for. If you ever wanted a high-level view of the DCWF, this article is for you.

What is the DoD Cyber Workforce Framework (DCWF)?

DCWF is a standardized workforce framework that DoD cybersecurity uses to categorize the full spectrum of cyber workforce roles. This framework is defined in DoD 8140, which replaced DoD 8570, which is an expanded and updated version of DoD8570 and draws on the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) and the DoD Joint Cyberspace Training and Certification Standards (JCT & CS). DCWF presents seven broad categories of work roles, which are broken down into 54 work roles and 33 specialty areas.

This framework leverages the Federal Cybersecurity Workforce Assessment Act (FCWAA) to help streamline identification, tracking and reporting. Going further, DCWF is used to develop cyber work role qualification requirements outlined in the DoD 8140 Manual and can be used for DoD-wide planning activities and workforce management.

To promote better understanding of DCWF, such as how it is used, DoD enlisted DISA to help create an interactive online tool. The DCWF Tool can be found here. It is packed with useful information about the different categories of work roles, specialty areas, and has a work role search that allows you to browse the cyber work roles covered by DoD Cyber Workforce Framework. The work role search, including the full list available to browse, is here.

DCWF sorts the cyber workforce into seven categories:

  • Analyze
  • Collect and operate
  • Investigate
  • Operate and maintain
  • Oversee and govern
  • Protect and defend
  • Securely provision

These seven categories are subdivided into specialty areas composed of the work roles covered by DCWF. These will be explored later in this article.

What is the purpose of DCWF?

DCWF was created by DoD cybersecurity in response to the nature of the cyber war space today. This space is constantly evolving with respect to threats and complexity. DCWF represents a reshaping of DoD’s cyber workforce understanding that includes all DoD personnel responsible for building, shaping, operating, defending and protecting cyber resources of the United States, as well as those that conduct cyber intelligence activities and those that enable cyber operations (both current and in the future). This moves the DoD from solely focusing on information assurance to a more comprehensive (inclusive) workforce focus.

Who is DCWF for?

DCWF covers 54 cyber work roles, organized into 33 specialty areas. Below is the complete list of work roles and the specialty areas they belong to, organized by their respective broad category.

Analyze

All Source Analysis

  •  All-Source Analyst
  • Mission Assessment Specialist

Exploitation Analysis

  • Exploitation Analyst

Language Analysis

  • Multi-Disciplined Language Analyst

Targets

  • Target Developer
  • Target Network Analyst

Threat Analysis

  • Warning Analyst

Collect & Operate

Collections Operations

  • All-Source Collection Manager
  • All-Source Collection Requirements Manager

Cyber Operational Planning

  • Cyber Intelligence Planner
  • Cyber Operations Planner
  • Partner Integration Planner

Investigate

Cyber Investigations

  • Cyber Crime Investigator

Digital Forensics

  • Cyber Defense Forensics Analyst
  • Forensics Analyst

Operate & Maintain

Customer Service and Technical Support

  • Technical Support Specialist

Data Administration

  • Data Analyst
  • Database Administrator

Knowledge Management

  • Knowledge Manager

Network Services

  • Network Operations Specialist

Systems Administration

  • System Administrator

Systems Analysis

  • Systems Security Analyst 

Oversee & Govern

Acquisition and Program/Project Management

  • IT Investment/Portfolio Manager
  • IT Program Auditor
  • IT Project Manager
  • Product Support Manager
  • Program Manager

Cybersecurity Management

  • COMSEC Manager
  • Information Systems Security Manager

Executive Cyber Leadership

  • Executive Cyber Leadership

Legal Advice and Advocacy

  • Cyber Legal Advisor
  • Privacy Compliance Manager

Strategic Planning and Policy

  • Cyber Policy and Strategic Planner
  • Cyber Workforce Developer and Manager

Training, Education and Awareness

  • Cyber Instructional Curriculum Developer
  • Cyber Instructor

Protect & Defend

Cyber Defense Analysis

  • Cyber Defense Analyst

Cyber Defense Infrastructure Support

  • Cyber Defense Infrastructure Support Specialist

Incident Response

  • Cyber Defense Incident Responder

Vulnerability Assessment & Management

  •  Vulnerability Assessment Analyst

Securely Provision

Risk Management

  • Authorizing Official/Designating Representative
  • Security Control Assessor

Software Development

  • Secure Software Assessor
  • Software Developer

Systems Architecture

  • Enterprise Architect
  • Security Architect

Systems Development

  • Information Systems Security Developer
  • Systems Developer

System Requirements Planning

  • Systems Requirements Planner

Technology R&D

  • Research & Development Specialist

Test and Evaluation

  • System Testing and Evaluation Specialist

It should be kept in mind that DCWF focuses on the personnel and not the work role. As another form of categorization, DoD groups personnel who work certain types of work roles into what is called workforce elements, presented below:

  • IT (Cyberspace)
  • Cybersecurity
  • Cyberspace Effects
  • Intelligence (Cyberspace)
  • Cyberspace Enablers

Conclusion

Warfare has shifted its focus to cyberspace and the battlefield is becoming more important by the day. To keep up with this reality, DoD revamped DoD cybersecurity by issuing the DoD Cyber Workforce Framework (DCWF). This framework shifts the focus of DoD cybersecurity away from solely information assurance and more towards the personnel end of the DoD cyber workforce. 

More details about DCWF will be available in the DoD 8140 manual once it is released to the public.

 

Sources

The DoD Cyber Workforce Framework (DCWF), US Department of Defense Chief Information Officer

DoD Cyber Workforce Framework Tool, DoD Cyber Exchange Public

8570 and 8140 DoD Directives: What’s the Difference?, CBTnuggets Blog

Posted: October 26, 2020
Articles Author
Greg Belding
View Profile

Greg is a Veteran IT Professional working in the Healthcare field. He enjoys Information Security, creating Information Defensive Strategy, and writing – both as a Cybersecurity Blogger as well as for fun.