Department of Defense Information Assurance Workforce Improvement Program

7.25.2013, Written by Andrew Kandels
image courtesy of the US Federal Government:
Computer service professionals working in the United States have a wealth of certification, training and professional development opportunities open to them.  Sometimes the sheer number of available courses, certifications and classes can be overwhelming.
One place that helps you make sense of where and how to start is the US Department of Defense Directive 8570 – Information Assurance Workforce Improvement Program also known as DoD 8570.  These outline the technical certification levels required when working with the US Government and agencies that adhere to US DoD guidelines.
According to the website, “Personnel performing IA functions must obtain one of the certifications required for their position, category/specialty and level to fulfill the IA baseline certification requirement. Most IA levels within a category or specialty have more than one approved certification and a certification may apply to more than one level.
Furthermore, if you achieve a higher level certification, it also counts for lower level certifications.  From the website again, “Higher level IAT and IAM certifications satisfy lower level requirements. Certifications listed in Level II or III cells can be used to qualify for Level I. However, Level I certifications cannot be used for Level II or III unless the certification is also listed in the Level II or III cell. ”
While holding the certifications that grant US Governmental Information Assurance levels is required to perform work for the government, many other non-governmental and private sector businesses look to these governmental standards as a quality and skills benchmark.  It is important that you check with the organization for whom you’re performing IA services to understand their specific requirements.
As with anything in life, the qualification standards can change.  The US Government revised these standards in January of 2013 to *remove* several certifications that had previously been accepted.  Quoting the website again, “The GIAC GSE and GISF were removed from the approved list on 25 January 2013. Individuals holding one of these certifications to qualify for their current IA position will remain qualified. However, a different certification may be required once the GIAC GSE or GISF expires or if the individual changes positions requiring a different certification.”
Field Nation partners with organizations like CompTIA that provide education and certification services required by DoD 8570.  We also partner with other professional organizations that provide industry specific certification SBCA for satellite broadcast communications and AIIM for information management.  Field Nation is committed to the professional development of all our users, anywhere they are.  Our partnerships with global testing and education centers like New Horizonsmean that your next certification is only a click away!
Keep an eye out for exciting new professional development partnership announcements!  

Written by:

Billy Cripe for FieldNation