Cyber Exercise Challenges Defence

Members of the international control and plans team inject and follows the reactions of participants as they respond to scenario injects during Exercise Cyber Coalition, in Tartu, Estonia from 16 to 20 November. Estonia is hosting NATO’s largest cyber exercise for the third year in a row. The exercise consists of more than 35 allied and partner nations and involves the use of the NATO Cyber Range, and includes agencies like the NATO Communication and Information Agency (NCIA). (NATO Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Stefan Hass – DEU A)
Nov 20, 2015

TALLINN, Estonia – For the third year running, Estonia is hosting NATO's largest cyber exercise from 16 to 20 November, 2015 in Tartu, Estonia. 

Exercise Cyber Coalition 2015 consist of more than 35 allied and partner nations. The exercise involves the use of the NATO Cyber Range, and includes agencies like the NATO Communication and Information Agency (NCIA). The organizations work together with subject matter experts at the NATO Cooperative Cyber  Defense Centre of Excellence (CCD COE), which is located in Tallinn, Estonia. 

This exercise differs from the Locked Shield series because it challenges both NATO and national agencies with a number of scenarios that increase in complexity.
"This exercise and its cyber scenario based activity test in great depth our collective ability to react, and challenge our decision making processes,” said Commander Robert Hoar, the exercise director. "The level of expertise participating this year is significant and clearly reflects the current attention on cyber activity worldwide.”
Working in a controlled and virtual environment, participants are presented with well-researched scenarios, which are fed into various systems and are then identified and addressed.  Participant reactions and responses are monitored and evaluated. Participants are under immense pressure as scenario injects increase in severity, but the training results provide immense value.

"It's a fast pace exercise and designed to place immense pressure on our participants. As our largest cyber exercise, using a Crisis Operational scenario, already we are seeing immense benefit and in particular great satisfaction that are our procedures are sound and flexible enough to meet varying demands,” said Hoar.

Through use of NATO Cyber Partnership, civilian industries are also involved throughout and have access to the NATO Cyber Range.  For the first time this in depth access will allow increase opportunities for defence organizations to learn from other industries and become a force multiplier increasing the capabilities of NATO's collective cyber defence.
Story by SHAPE Public Affairs Office

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