Gold advanced cyber specialist badge

basically I’m looking to start this course in the near future and have no clue if I am eligible to do it or not myself I am a 16 year old Fs and a silver badge holder with classification of master cadet.
what little info I have got doesn’t help much and id like to know if I’m eligible to do it and what things I need to do to pass the badge

Requirements are 16 and silver holder.

The Gold course is a 1 week residential held at RAF Cosford. So you’ll probably need to wait until next year.

Make your staff aware that you want to apply when the courses are advertised.

Other route is if your Silver is the CyberFirst Defenders Course, then you can do the CyberFirst Advanced, but good luck finding a course.

okay, thank you

Actually @Banks_101, you might be in luck. Perhaps one of the few benefits to the Covid pandemic is that CyberFirst have started running the gold courses online.

You can book places at: Gold Course

Just remember to email your OC with the cert, so they can order the Gold badge!


thank you!

Interesting. If someone does this course but hasn’t done the silver/bronze do they get the gold badge or do we still require them to do the lower steps first?

Since that course is run externally by Smallpeice, individuals don’t need the our RAFAC PTS Silver as a prerequisite for the Cyberfirst Advanced Course.

I imagine it will be same as completing the OU course on Silver, you can get it done first but you won’t get anything until you need to complete the Bronze requirements eventually. Once you achieve Bronze, you would get Silver Cyber, or Gold if you complete this course. So Cyber from the ACTO is actually progressive, unlike something like Leadership…

Basically, if you have a cadet that is in Year 12, I would definitely encourage them on it as it is time sensitive! They can complete the iDEA award and Bronze Course in their own time afterwards. The Cyberfirst course is useful for life anyway without our PTS qualifications coming into it…

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That seems a bit… petty, really? I’d understand it if there were skills introduced during Bronze that you needed for Silver and Gold, but the external courses are age related, and not dependant on prior learning.

If we can do direct gold for music, and DofE. why not for Cyber?

Even though they aren’t linked, there’s still progressive learning related to the level achieved.

Music and DofE are based degree of difficulty - if you are at that level then you would be able to achieve the others.

I was always under the impression you needed Defenders first…

I can find nothing on the NCSC website, nor the smallpeice trust websites to say that Defenders is a prerequisite. Perhaps they realise that there are too many candidates to too few courses to make that so (which is something that the RAFAC should think about, IMO).

They also are running Defenders courses, for what it’s worth.

The same could be said for Gold Level Cyber, surely?

I would guess that the RAFAC has introduced these rules to stop cadets from leapfrogging the lower levels, and filling their badges with Gold ones. Which I kind of understand, but feel it’s a bit of a shame that cadets are unable to choose a level that matches their own understanding of a subject. Plus, surely it reflects better on our organisation if we have more cadets wearing gold Cyber badges??

Surely, we wouldn’t withhold Gold badges if someone hadn’t passed Defenders first?

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There’s also the problem that you can be too old to do some of the cyberfirst courses therefore options are limited for cadets who don’t do it early enough. The cyber system seems odd in that the bronze course is a sticking point, but then you can do silver in an afternoon all by yourself. So really there shouldn’t be anyone with a bronze badge for more than a month.

Not really. If you can play the flute at grade 367 then you can play at grade 204, if you’re good enough for the national band then you would be good enough for Region/Wing band, etc.

If you have done the learning for Gold Cyber, that doesn’t mean you could answer a question based on the (or one of the) Silver syllabus.

I get the point, but this is where we have the difficulty in transposing two systems under one umbrella award - if you have a gold RAFAC badge, the inference is that you also meet the requirements for the lower levels.

If we accept the crossover between the two streams, then I will stand corrected - but that doesn’t change the lack of direct entry.

I kind of see where you’re coming from, but if the company who are teaching the course don’t require any previous experience, why should the RAFAC?

I’ve just had a look at the ACTO, and it does say that:

“5. Cadets who have completed the qualification by other legitimate means will automatically gain the qualification and a Gold RAFAC Cyber Badge upon presentation of proof.”

I’d assume enrolling on, and passing, an online course delivered on behalf of the NCSC would count as a legitimate means?

Our training has been hammered this year - IMO we should be looking to be more flexible when considering things like this. Organisations like the DofE have recognised that, and adjusted their expedition requirements accordingly - we should do the same.


Don’t disagree and OP has silver anyway so not so relevant in this case if we have the flexibility to cross over and the “other means” caveat is as flexible as it’s worded.

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Hello! I’m trying to find a Gold Cyber course atm. I hold Silver (achieved in May 2019, before changes to ACTO 71). As I’m too old (17) I can’t attend any CyberFirst Defenders courses to continue onto the RAFAC CyberFirst Advanced Course. Further, Smallpeice Trust only seem to be offering CyberFirst Trailblazers and CyberFirst Adventurers (available for year 8s and 9s). As the RAF Cosford camp to complete the alternative route (RAFAC Advanced Cyber Specialist course) is obviously not going ahead, is it even possible for me to obtain Gold Cyber?

If you have any reccomendations or are aware of alternative routes given these exceptional circumstances please do let me know.

You are correct at the moment that there are no Gold courses.

However it is being looked at.

Smallpeice did run the advanced remote courses last year and Cadets have gained the Gold badge via that route. Suggest keeping an eye on their / the CyberFirst site.