World, Science-Technology

NATO team tackles cyber-crisis exercise in Estonia

Team takes part in game-based exercise to protect vital services and critical infrastructure under cyber-attack

Gozde Bayar   | 09.04.2019
NATO team tackles cyber-crisis exercise in Estonia


A team of nearly 40 cyber security experts led by NATO are competing in Locked Shields 2019, the world’s largest “live-fire” cyber exercise starting Tuesday, said a statement by the bloc.

Organized by the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) in the Baltic nation of Estonia, the annual exercise is a unique opportunity for cyber experts to enhance their skills in defending national information technology (IT) systems and critical infrastructure under real-time attacks, the statement added.

The three-day exercise uses a game-based "live-fire" approach, enabling participants to take on roles in fictional response teams in a laboratory environment.

This year’s exercise scenario covers a fictitious country called Berylia, which faces cyber-attacks on its civilian infrastructure in the midst of national elections.

The attacks lead to severe disruptions in areas such as water purification systems, the electric power grid, and 4G public safety networks.

The team's main goal is to protect the networks from further attacks.

The NATO team, which emerged as the winner of previous Locked Shields, strengthened itself this year with 10 volunteers from six NATO allies -- Bulgaria, Croatia, Norway, Romania, Slovenia, and Turkey.

More than 1,000 international cyber defenders and decision-makers will take part in the exercise.

Locked Shields is a unique opportunity to encourage experimentation, training and cooperation between members of CCDCOE, NATO, and partner nations since 2010.

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