International Cyber Defence Exercise Locked Shields 2012 Begins Today

NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence in cooperation with its partners is organising an international cyber defence exercise from 26th to 28th of March. The goal of the exercise is to support the Multinational Experiment 7, train IT specialist and legal experts, and learn from the activities of the teams.

“Centre’s main objective is to enhance the cyber defence capability of NATO and its partners and exercises such as this are invaluable for training the specialists’ skills and cooperation,” commented Director of the Centre, Colonel Ilmar Tamm. “I am very pleased that we have found good partners such as the Estonian Cyber Defence League to work with and I can only hope that this cooperation will continue for the next exercises as well.”

According to the exercise scenario, the Blue Teams represent small telecommunications companies which fall under cyber attacks. Blue Teams, distributed all over Europe, are expected to defend and secure their networks by technical means, but also to be capable of providing adequate information to the media, to report observations and detected incidents to CERT, to write summaries to the management in order to assess the impact of attacks to the business and to respond to requests from clients and users.

There will be one Red Team, whose objective is to provide equally balanced attacks against all Blue Team networks. To measure the success of different defence strategies and tactics, efforts of Blue Teams are assessed on a predefined scale.

The Blue Teams consist of experts and specialists from governmental organisations, military units, CERT teams and private sector companies. There will be Blue Teams from Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Finland, Italy, NATO (NCIRC), Slovakia and combined teams from Germany-Austria and Denmark-Norway-Sweden. The core of the Red Team is composed of specialists and volunteers from Finland and Estonia, with additional contributors from Germany, Latvia, Italy and NCIRC.

Locked Shields, named after an ancient defence tactics, is not a first technical exercise organised by the Centre. Last one, nicknamed Baltic Cyber Shield, was organised in May 2010 in cooperation with Sweden and Estonian Cyber Defence League. The Centre also contributes to the NATO Cyber Defence Exercise (Cyber Coalition) by helping to plan, develop, and execute the exercise.

NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence is one of many NATO Centres of Excellence. Its mission is to enhance the capability, cooperation and information sharing among NATO, its member nations and partners in cyber defence by virtue of education, research and development, lessons learned and consultation.