4th TES Cyber Team recognized as Space Force’s best for 2023

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  • Space Training and Readiness Command Public Affairs
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The United States Space Force recently recognized the 4th Test and Evaluation Squadron (TES) as the Cyber Operations Team of the Year for 2023.
This accolade is part of the Space and Cyber Operations Functional Awards, announced by U.S. Space Force Lt. Gen. DeAnna Burt, Deputy Chief of Space Operations for Operations, Cyber, and Nuclear.
The 4th TES is composed of Guardians from diverse backgrounds who leverage their unique expertise to conduct critical test and evaluation missions. These missions aim to evaluate space, missile, and missile defense capabilities in operationally realistic environments, which ultimately inform warfighters and influence national resource allocations.
The 4th TES Cyber Operations Team is responsible for coordinating and executing cyber operational risk and penetration assessments. These assessments directly contribute to the cyber resiliency of combat-ready Electronic Warfare (EW), Tactical Satellite Communications, and GPS weapon systems, supporting national security.
According to U.S. Space Force Lt. Col. Benjamin Szutar, the squadron commander, “Our 4 TES Cyber Guardians work diligently to engineer technical solutions which support the 4th TES integrated test mission worldwide.”
“Our team's ability to anticipate, identify, and counteract cyber threats has directly contributed to the operational readiness of the Space Force,” he added. “Their innovative approaches in solving these complex problems ensure that we are delivering combat-credible weapon systems to joint warfighters.”
Throughout the year, the Cyber Operations Team, operating under Space Delta 12 at Peterson Space Force Base, Colo., demonstrated exceptional skill and innovation in their field, resulting in the awarded citation for improving the cyber resiliency of multiple capabilities across the force.
According to the award citation, from January 1 to December 31, 2023, the team led a series of red and blue team test events, successfully identifying potential vulnerabilities within a portfolio of programs valued at $161 billion.
One of the team’s significant achievements included engineering a transportable Command and Control suite that facilitated operations between government agencies and aircraft. This system played a crucial role in coordinating Air Traffic Control operations during a live-fire Electronic Warfare test, ensuring the safety and effectiveness of the operations.
Additionally, the squadron conducted the unit’s first National Security Agency adversarial assessment, which involved simulated cyber-attacks on a system that supports a critical wartime communication system.
In a memorandum to the Space Force, Burt praised the award recipients, stating, “These Guardians are recognized for their outstanding contributions to the space and cyber operations missions of the Space Force.”