General Sir Barrons: Militaries to Develop “Cyberinstinct”

Cyber defence has to become an integral part of military capabilities, said General Sir Richard Barrons, Commander of the Joint Forces Command, visiting the Tallinn-based NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence on Friday.

“It is important to really integrate cyber defence into our military capabilities. This means our militaries have to develop a „cyberinstinct“,” highlighted General Sir Barrons. “While there is a long way to go, we are on a right track,” he added.

General Sir Barrons emphasized that nations and the international community will not need to establish new legal frameworks for cyber incidents but rather mainstream existing ones. “That is the fundamental premise of the Tallinn Manual Process facilitated and led by the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence. Rather than demanding new international law, the manual takes existing norms and applies them to the cyber domain,” said Colonel Artur Suzik, director of the Centre.

“As cyber security is developing fast, we need to be able to look at the issues involved from technical, legal, policy and strategic angles,” added Colonel Suzik. He explained that the majority of the Centre’s initiatives involve experts from a number of disciplines to best support NATO and Allies as an interdisciplinary think tank and training centre.

The Tallinn-based NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence is a NATO-accredited knowledge hub focused on interdisciplinary applied research and development as well as consultations, trainings and exercises in the field of cyber security. The Centre’s mission is to enhance capability, cooperation and information-sharing between NATO, Allies and partners in cyber defence.

Membership of the Centre is open to all Allies. Currently, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, the United Kingdom and the USA have signed on as sponsoring nations. Greece and Turkey are working on finalising their accession process. Austria has become a contributing participant and Finland is well on its way to doing the same.

Pictures of the visit are available at (photo credit: Estonian Defence Forces).