The team from Sweden ranked highest at the largest and most complex international live-fire cyber defence exercise Locked Shields 2021. Blue Teams from Finland and the Czech Republic took second and third place respectively.
“Congratulations to the teams, whose strategy proved to be the best, however every single participating team is a winner for tackling the unrivalled complex cyber challenges of Locked Shields exercise,” said Carry Kangur, Head of Cyber Exercises at the CCDCOE.
“This year the exercise involved in total more than 5000 virtualised systems that had to be defended against over 4000 attacks. In addition to maintaining more than 150 complex IT systems per team, the Blue Teams had to be efficient in reporting incidents, executing strategic decisions, solving forensic, legal and media challenges and dealing with hostile information operations. Understanding the interdependencies of national IT systems is at the heart of protecting a nation under a massive cyber attack,” added Kangur.
In 2021 the exercise highlighted the growing need to enhance dialogue between technical experts, civil and military participants and decision-making levels. The CCDCOE integrates the technical and strategic game, enabling participating nations to practice the entire chain of command in the event of a severe cyber incident involving both civilian and military players.
The annual real-time network defence exercise Locked Shields is a unique opportunity for national cyber defenders to practise protection of national IT systems and critical infrastructure under the intense pressure of a severe cyber attack.
Locked Shields 2021 is organised by CCDCOE in cooperation with NATO Communications and Information Agency, the Estonian Ministry of Defence, the Estonian Defence Forces, Siemens, Ericsson, TalTech, Foundation CR14, Bittium, Clarified Security, Arctic Security, Cisco, Stamus Networks, VMware, SpaceIT, Sentinel, the Financial Service Information Sharing and Analysis Center (FS-ISAC), US Defense Innovation Unit, Microsoft, Atech, Avibras, SUTD iTrust Singapore, The European Centre of Excellence for Countering Hybrid Threats, NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence, European Defence Agency, Space ISAC, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), STM, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd, NATO M&S COE and PaloAlto networks.