VADM Takanen: Finland Needs Cyber Defence Experts

Vice Admiral Kari Takanen, Chief of the Finnish Defence Command, highlighted the need for international cooperation in training cyber defence experts. He was briefed at the Tallinn-based NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence as part of his visit to Estonia today.

“Finland is building up its cyber defence capability and we need the most knowledgeable people,” Vice Admiral Kari Takanen highlighted. International cooperation is essential in training experts to counter hybrid threats, he said.

“Threats in cyberspace are real and it is rightfully becoming a domain of warfare. This means nations have to focus on operational issues in the digital space and laws often need to catch up with events on the ground,” the Vice Admiral emphasized.

“Finland is a contributing participant of the Centre and the Finnish experts here are fully integrated into our activities. In particular, their input to several operational level research projects and continued support of the world’s largest international live-fire cyber defence exercise Locked Shields is remarkable,” highlighted LTC Nestor Ganuza, Chief of the Exercises and Training Branch at the Centre.

Vice Admiral Takanen reaffirmed the Finnish commitment to the Centre, including continued staffing with two Finnish experts. He was briefed on the activities of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence, including exercises and the Tallinn Manual on applicability of international law to cyber sphere.

The NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (NATO CCD COE) is a NATO-accredited knowledge hub, think-tank and training facility. The international military organisation focuses on interdisciplinary applied research and development, as well as consultations, trainings and exercises in the field of cyber security.

The heart of the Centre is a diverse group of international experts, including legal scholars, policy and strategy experts as well as technology researchers with military, government and industry backgrounds.

Membership of the Centre is open to all Allies. Currently, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Poland, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States have signed on as Sponsoring Nations of the Centre. Austria and Finland have become Contributing Participants – the status available for non-NATO nations.

Pictures of the visit: (photo credit: Ardi Hallismaa, Estonian defence Forces).