Navy CTN Rating: Cryptologic Technician – Networks (2024)

Last Updated on November 16, 2023

This guide provides helpful information for those looking to join the Navy as a Cryptologic Technician – Networks (CTN) during the Fiscal Year 2024.

As a Cryptologic Technician Networks, you’ll use advanced technology to fight in the future battlespace.

You’ll perform cyber operations, track enemies, and protect our networks from attacks. You must be an expert in communication defense and forensics to maintain cybersecurity.

Can you handle the challenge as a CTN?

Job Description

Cryptologic Technicians – Networks (CTN) are Navy enlisted Sailors who use various skills to strategize and execute both offensive and defensive Cyberspace Operations. Their responsibilities include Threat Analysis, Digital Forensics, Network Exploitation, Research and Development, and Mission Planning.

They use signals intelligence and cryptologic functions for tactical and strategic purposes, execute cyberspace effects, and report on global threats to support special operations forces, national, fleet, and joint requirements.

Additionally, they control and safeguard access to classified material and information systems.

Cryptologic Technicians work worldwide at various shore commands, ships, aircraft, and submarines, and with Naval Special Warfare. They divide their time between onshore and offshore assignments.

Their work involves managing secure computerized information processing systems and communication circuit control equipment from secure offices. They operate in watch teams and can be assigned to special warfare units.

CTNs can work independently or as part of small teams under the supervision of Cryptologic Warfare Officers or Cyber Warfare Engineers, who have four-year degrees.

Approximately 600 individuals are employed in the CTN rating globally.


Specific Responsibilities

The job of Cryptologic Technicians – Networks (CTNs) is to specialize in communication network defense and forensics. The following are their assigned duties:

  • Observing, recognizing, gathering, and evaluating data
  • Conducting risk mitigation, vulnerability assessments, and incident response/reconstruction services
  • Developing tools for accessing network targets
  • Performing computer network operations globally to assist Navy and Department of Defense missions
  • Protecting Navy networks from threats

Different Roles

Access Network Operator

Access Network Operators engage in the collection, processing, and geolocation of wired or wireless computer and digital networks to locate and track targets of interest, to support various requirements such as special operations forces, national, fleet, and joint operations.

Cyber Defense Analyst

Cyber Defense Analysts gather and analyze data from various cyber defense tools to identify and reduce potential threats within different environments.

Cyber Defense Forensic Analyst

Cyber Defense Forensics Analysts gather and evaluate digital evidence, as well as investigate computer security incidents to get beneficial information to aid in the mitigation of system/network vulnerabilities.

Cyber Exploitation Analyst

Cyber Exploitation Analysts work together to identify gaps in access and collection, using allowed resources and techniques to infiltrate targeted networks.

Cyber Operations Planner

Cyber Operations Planners create plans for various cyber operations by collaborating with both internal and external partners. This involves taking part in target selection, validation, and synchronization, while also facilitating integration during the execution of cyber actions.

Cyber Research and Development Specialist

Cyber Research and Development Specialists conduct capability development using reverse engineering, vulnerability research, all-source intelligence, and industry-standard development practices to support offensive and defensive operations.

Cyber Threat Emulation Operator

The Cyber Threat Emulation Operators (CTEOs) recreate threat activity to fully assess the blue Mission Relevant Terrain Cyber (MRTC) using adversarial Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTPs) with the help of all-source intelligence.

Their aim is to perform aggressive threat assessments of information and combat systems to inform defensive TTPs and posture.

They leverage knowledge of adversary activities/behaviors and vulnerabilities to develop operational effects that align with MRT-C priorities and recommend mitigation strategies to allied entities.

Digital Network Analyst

Digital Network Analysts conduct target development, discovery, and analysis in cyberspace to support offensive operations for various requirements, including special operations forces, national, fleet, and joint.

Interactive Operator

Interactive Operators perform multiple tasks, including network exploitation, testing, and evaluation of capabilities, data acquisition, network navigation, and forensic analysis. These tasks are carried out to support special operations forces, national, fleet, and joint requirements.

Training and Promotion Opportunities

Basic Training

After finishing basic training at Recruit Training Command Great Lakes (commonly referred to as Boot Camp), individuals will proceed to specialized training.

“Class A School” is a 23-week technical school in Pensacola, FL that teaches communication and computer/network theory, troubleshooting techniques, and communication security.

Completing this training can lead to worldwide assignments, with opportunities for deployment to different locations.

CTNs can be assigned to afloat staff, direct support, shore-based commands, and limited special warfare commands.

Contact an enlisted Navy recruiter to learn more about CTN training. Promotions are available but are based on performance and competition.

Advanced Training

“Class C School” is a 7-week technical program located in Pensacola, FL that instructs students on detecting, reacting, and recovering from attacks on computers and computer networks.

The curriculum includes extracting digital intelligence from various layers of computer protocols containing different types of digital information transmitted through multiple technologies.

Additional training in Cryptologic Technician Networks may be offered at later career stages. Naval Officer positions may also be available for those with a college degree and leadership goals, offering the chance to oversee and mentor others.

Qualifications to Join

To become an Enlisted Sailor in the Navy, you need a high school diploma or equivalent. For a Cryptologic Technician – Networks position, you must be a U.S. citizen and meet eligibility requirements for a Top Secret/Sensitive Compartmented Information security clearance.

To be eligible, the applicant must hold U.S. citizenship and their immediate family members must also be citizens of either the U.S. or a country categorized as low risk on the ICD 704 matrix.

A special security representative from the Naval Cyber Forces Command will conduct a personal security screening interview.

Individuals who have previously served in the Peace Corps are not eligible.

Normal color perception and hearing are required, and you should possess average manual dexterity and good character. Offenses involving moral turpitude typically result in disqualification.

Being resourceful and logical is important, as is the ability to learn advanced technical concepts for computer and electronic system troubleshooting.

Qualifications may vary depending on your current or past service status.

ASVAB Requirement

Applicants must score the minimum ASVAB score below to qualify to join the Navy as a Cryptologic Technician – Networks.

  • AR + 2MK + GS >= 255 ; or
  • VE + AR + MK + MC >= 235 ; or
  • CT + MK +VE >= 173 ; and CT >= 60

Note: The Cyber Test (CT) requirement applies to new accession Sailors who entered service after September 30th, 2016.

The enlistment qualification requirements above are current as of Fiscal Year 2024, per the Navy Personnel Command. This information is not readily available to the public. So, contact your local Navy Enlisted Recruiter for the most current requirements to join the Navy as an enlisted Sailor.

More Information

If you wish to learn more about becoming a Navy as a Cryptologic Technician – Networks (CTN), contact your local Navy Enlisted Recruiter. They will provide you with more detailed information you’re unlikely to find online.

You may also be interested in the following related Navy Enlisted jobs:

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