Estonia hosts the world’s largest cyber exercise

The Tallinn-based NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, abbreviated as CCDCOE, is organising the Locked Shields 2022, the largest and most complex annual international live-fire cyber defence exercise in the world.

At the exercise, cyber experts practise the protection of national civilian and military IT systems and critical infrastructure in a large-scale cyber-attack. It is conducted under conditions of intense pressure, with teams countering series of sophisticated cyberattacks.

According to the exercise’s scenario, a fictional island country, Berylia, is experiencing a deteriorating security situation. Several hostile events have coincided with coordinated cyberattacks against Berylian major military and civilian IT systems. The exercise planners draw on the current geopolitical situation to develop realistic and challenging scenarios that consider the current security environment where cyber incidents are unlikely to happen in isolation and are employed as part of a wider geopolitical strategy.

“The exercise provides an opportunity to practice cooperation in a crisis situation between both civilian and military units, as well as public and private sectors, as in the event of a large-scale cyber-attack these tactical and strategic decision-makers must work together,” a representative of the CCDCOE said in a statement.

The exercise is organised by the CCDCOE in cooperation with NATO, Siemens, Microsoft, Tallinn University of Technology and other partners.

The NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence is a NATO-accredited cyber defence hub that supports the alliance’s member nations and the alliance itself with cyber defence expertise.

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