Embark on a transformative 50-day journey with Boston Cybernetics Institute's Senior CNO Developer Course, uniquely titled "RF". Tailored for the seasoned cybersecurity professional, this course bridges the gap between theoretical knowledge and applied skills in the radio frequency domain, a critical facet of modern cyber operations.
Dive into a rigorous curriculum that encompasses a full spectrum of RF systems — from foundational lab and hardware skills to advanced electromagnetic warfare. You will emerge with a holistic mastery of hardware design, digital logic, and the inner workings of linear time-invariant systems, all essential for crafting robust cyber-physical systems.
Our comprehensive coverage of communication systems theory and applications, paired with hands-on waveform analysis, will empower you to understand and exploit the intricacies of radio architecture. You'll delve into the science of radio wave propagation, antenna theory, and the critical aspects of radio wave safety, ensuring operational effectiveness while mitigating risks.
Particularly for military professionals, the course emphasizes the strategic application of electromagnetic warfare knowledge. This not only includes the offensive and defensive capabilities but also the development of tools that operate under the duress of the battlefield's digital front.
Whether you're advancing within the private sector or reinforcing the United States' cyber-military strength, this course is engineered to enhance your strategic acumen. The skills acquired will serve as a cornerstone for your organization's ability to innovate, execute, and sustain cyber operations in an increasingly contested electromagnetic spectrum.
Join us at BCI, where the confluence of academic rigor and battlefield pragmatism equips you to excel in the relentless cyber arena. Your journey to becoming a paramount figure in RF systems development starts here.
Curriculum Overview: Detailed Course Breakdown
Lab and Hardware Skills
Delving into the practical aspects of cyber operations, this module equips students with the necessary laboratory and hardware skills crucial for a Senior CNO Developer. Trainees will engage in hands-on exercises that involve setting up and maintaining a safe and efficient cyber operations lab, including the management of sensitive equipment. Participants will learn how to diagnose and troubleshoot hardware issues, configure network devices for secure communications, and practice techniques for hardware-based encryption and secure data destruction, ensuring robust physical cybersecurity measures.
Hardware Design and Digital Logic
Understanding the backbone of digital systems, students will explore the intricacies of hardware design and digital logic. The course emphasizes the development of hardware that can withstand attempts at reverse engineering and tampering. Through practical exercises, attendees will design digital circuits with security as the foundational principle, ensuring that the hardware is not only functional but also hardened against cyber threats, an aspect critical in both civilian and military applications.
Linear Time-Invariant (LTI) Systems
Our curriculum includes an in-depth study of LTI systems, as they form the basis for understanding complex communication and signal processing operations within cyber infrastructures. Students will analyze how these systems can be exploited by adversaries and how to design signals and filters that remain reliable under electronic warfare conditions. The understanding of LTI systems is pivotal for creating resilient communication channels that are less susceptible to interception and jamming by adversaries.
Communication Systems Theory and Applications
Communication systems are the lifeline of cyber operations. This topic covers the theoretical underpinnings and real-world applications of communication systems, with a strong emphasis on secure and covert communication methodologies. Participants will learn how to implement protocols that ensure integrity and confidentiality, study the use of spread-spectrum techniques for resistance against jamming, and understand the importance of secure key distribution in military and private sector operations.
Waveform analysis is key to identifying vulnerabilities in communication systems. The course dissects various waveform types, their applications, and how they can be analyzed for weaknesses and potential exploitation. Students will engage with advanced signal processing tools to dissect complex waveforms and uncover hidden data streams, a skill that is invaluable for cyber professionals tasked with both offensive and defensive operations.
This section dives into the design and operation of radio systems, focusing on the architecture that makes secure and reliable wireless communication possible. Students will study different radio architectures and their susceptibilities to cyber threats, learning how to build and configure radios that can elude detection and defend against electronic attacks. This knowledge is crucial for professionals who aim to operate in contested or sensitive environments.
Radio wave Propagation
Understanding radio wave propagation is essential for planning and executing cyber operations that involve wireless communications. Students will explore how the environment affects signal strength and clarity and learn to predict and mitigate issues that could compromise operational security. This section emphasizes the application of propagation theories to enhance the survivability of communications in various conditions, including those relevant to military operations.
Antennas are critical components of any wireless communication system. This course segment addresses the principles of antenna theory, design, and deployment, with a special focus on the creation of antennas suited for stealth and long-range communication in cyber operations. By mastering these concepts, students will be able to design antennas that minimize the risk of interception and provide optimal performance for both offensive and defensive cyber tasks.
In this high-stakes module, participants will be immersed in the world of electromagnetic warfare, learning to craft strategies that use or counteract electromagnetic energy to control the spectrum, attack an enemy, or impede enemy assaults. The course covers the design and deployment of systems for electronic attack, protection, and warfare support, integrating these skills into a comprehensive cyber operational framework.
Radio wave Safety Considerations
The final topic ensures that students are well-versed in the safety considerations associated with radio wave emissions. Covering the legal and health aspects, this segment prepares students to implement safety protocols in operational planning and execution. Knowledge of emission standards and safety practices is vital for any operation, particularly to prevent unintended harm and to ensure compliance with regulations, a consideration that is often underappreciated in cyber warfare but is critical for sustainable operations.
Who Should Take This Course?
This intensive course is designed for individuals who are aspiring to become Senior Cyber Network Operations (CNO) Developers, as well as those already active in the field looking to enhance their technical mastery. It is particularly suited for:
Cybersecurity Professionals: Individuals with a background in cybersecurity who wish to deepen their understanding of the physical layer of cyber operations and the role of electronic systems in network security.
Military and Government Personnel: Members of the armed forces or government agencies who are responsible for the design, deployment, or protection of communication systems in a security-sensitive environment.
Electrical and Computer Engineers: Engineers who seek to specialize in secure hardware design, radio frequency communication, and the development of resilient systems against electronic warfare.
Research and Development Specialists: R&D professionals focusing on cutting-edge technologies in secure communications, encryption hardware, and cyber-physical systems.
Security Consultants and Strategists: Consultants who provide expert assessments and strategies to organizations for protecting against electronic espionage and cyber attacks.
IT Professionals: Information technology experts aiming to broaden their skillset to include the cybersecurity aspects of wireless and hardware technologies.
Participants should possess a foundational understanding of electronic systems and basic cybersecurity principles. A blend of curiosity, a desire to tackle complex challenges, and a commitment to security are the key traits of successful candidates for this course.
About Boston Cybernetics Institute
Boston Cybernetics Institute, PBC was created by former MIT Lincoln Lab cybersecurity researchers to give meaningful niche cyber instruction to a new generation of cybersecurity professionals.
We avoid the normal style of teaching with PowerPoint and lectures, opting to provide instead real-life engaging instruction that takes place in a customized environment. We have given our style of instruction to multiple DoD agencies, US commercial companies, and international companies.
Instructors at Boston Cybernetics Institute
President of the Boston Cybernetics Institute
Jeremy Blackthorne is a Lead Instructor at the Boston Cybernetics Institute (BCI). Before BCI, he was a researcher in the Cyber System Assessments group at MIT Lincoln Laboratory. Blackthorne is the co-creator and instructor for the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) courses: Modern Binary Exploitation, Spring 2015 and Malware Analysis, Spring 2013. Jeremy has published research at various academic and industry conferences. He served in the U.S. Marine Corps and is an alumnus of RPISEC. He holds a BS and MS in computer science. Blackthorne was an active member of the Student Security Club and CTF team, RPISEC, from 2012 to 2015, where he taught seminars on Reverse-Engineering, Exploitation, and various other Cybersecurity topics.
security researcher and instructor
Clark Wood is a security researcher and instructor at the Boston Cybernetics Institute (BCI), focusing on Reverse Engineering, Exploitation, and CI/CD. He recently built a Reverse-Engineering and Exploitation platform for a DoD customer and is the Lead Engineer for BCI’s Government Services. Clark was formerly on the technical staff at MIT Lincoln Laboratory where he was a member of the Cyber System Assessments Group. Clark holds a BA in Economics from the University of Florida, a BS and MS in Computer Science from Florida State University, and a Master’s in Technology and Policy from MIT.
security researcher and instructor
Rodolfo Cuevas is a security researcher and instructor at BCI, where he focuses on understanding how design constraints can be used to limit the impact of an attacker on a system. His research combines the adversarial mindset with approaches influenced by Systems and Control Theory. Rodolfo was a staff member at MIT Lincoln Laboratory and began his career as a RADAR and Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) analyst. Later, Rodolfo transitioned to evaluating and Red-Teaming tactical and commercial cyber systems in support of DoD and other government programs. Rodolfo holds a BS, M.Eng., and M.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Cornell University.
security researcher and instructor
Reed Porada is a security researcher and instructor at BCI, focused on getting to the "so what" of both defensive and offensive cyber measures. Reed also leads BCI training in Cyber Systems Analysis, focusing on developing systems-thinking skills of developers up to managers. Reed was a staff member at MIT Lincoln Laboratory for ten years, where he was responsible for Test and Evaluation, Test Automation Research, Red-Teaming of Cyber Systems, and Blue System Architectures. Reed was a computer scientist at the Naval Research Laboratory focused on wireless communication systems. He holds a BS in Computer Science from the University of Maryland, College Park and an MS in Software Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.