Cyber–a word that is used to explain the culture of computers, information technology, and virtual reality–has evolved to another level over the years. Today, the prefix ‘cyber’ is attached to almost any other word to describe the technological aspect of the term being used. Examples include: cyber-security, cyber-attack, cyber-warfare, cyber-crime, cyber-terrorism, cyber-information, and I can go on and on, but I think you get my point.

With this evolution, cyber has become an integral part of our professional and personal lives, touching implicitly across all industries. In the defence and security industry, cyber plays a principal role in warfare, security and even intelligence. Cyber has grown to such an extent that it is now even considered to be an operational environment on the same level with Land, Sea, and Air.

As a leading voice in the industry, Vanguard–through our different platforms of print, online and events–has been reporting about this growing sector. For example, in the next few weeks, we will host our fifth annual C4ISR and Beyond event in Ottawa. Cyber is a part of the agenda with the Director General of Cyberspace, Brigadier-General A.R. Jayne, slated to speak. Nicholas Scheurkogel–who led key cyber intelligence capabilities at the Department of National Defence (DND) including strategic cyber assessment, tactical support to cyber defence teams, and intelligence operations over the past decade–is also on the presenting line up for this event. Attendees will also have the opportunity to hear from Rear Admiral J. B. Zwick, Chief of Force Development.

Given the importance of this topic, we have dedicated this issue of Vanguard to cyber. In addition to speaking at C4ISR and Beyond, Scheurkogel has also penned an article on some key points for cyber planning, as well as some pitfalls to avoid, that will help enable today’s commanders and command staff to be effective in this new operational environment.

Valarie Findlay writes about the lessons Canada can take away from Israel’s and Estonia’s rise to cybersecurity royalty status. She points out that while Canada has the grassroots elements to establish a comprehensive, renewable and sustainable long-term national strategy, it will be up to leaders to enlist the experts to activate these core components.

In her piece, Guardians of the Future, Katherine Thompson discusses planning for the future and how to attract and retain talent for cyber-related roles within the military. She explains that the specific skills and training of the ‘cyber warrior’ demand a departure from traditional recruiting practices to a more aligned and online approach in making a career in military service appealing in the future.

Business travel takes up a good chunk of our working time. Practicing proper cyber “hygiene” is critical during these trips to ensure that our organizations and even personal information is kept secure. Checkout out the Dashboard on some of the tips to follow when travelling. Some other good pieces in this issue will give you additional insights into cyber, blockchain, tactical connectivity and updates from recent industry events.

As always, I’m excited to announce our Game Changers: Robert Brooks, CEO and Founder of Sensor Medical Laboratories Ltd.; Jana Lee Murray, Account Manager at CAE Inc. and President of Women in Defence and Security (WiDS); and David Uram, CEO of Factory Bucket Inc. Each has their own unique experiences to share that can benefit us in one way or the other.

If you are planning to attend C4ISR and Beyond on January 30, 2019, in Ottawa, I look forward to seeing you. If not, please feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn or by email.

I hope you enjoy reading this issue.