Cyber defense exercise starting in Tallinn next week to focus on cooperation

  • 2024-04-15
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Locked Shields 2024, the world's largest live-fire cyber defense exercise that will kick off in Tallinn next week, will highlight the global community's commitment to combating cyber threats.

Organized by the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defense Center of Excellence (CCDCOE), the annual exercise goes beyond traditional cyber exercises by incorporating experts from different disciplines to address the multifaceted nature of cyber threats, the CCDCOE said in a press release on Monday.

This year, about 4,000 experts from more than 40 nations, will join forces in a simulated environment during Locked Shields to protect the infrastructure of a fictional nation and country. They will confront a series of challenges that replicate the complexity of real-world cyber defense, including critical thinking, strategic decision-making, legal considerations, crisis communication, and strategic planning, all aimed at bolstering their cyber defense capabilities

The exercise's strength lies in its comprehensive approach, combining technical skills with strategic, legal, and communication expertise to develop a diverse defenes strategy. Participants are urged to leverage their collective skills, fostering an environment where collaboration is key to overcoming intricate cyber challenges.

The increased involvement of different nations and partners demonstrates the global reach and importance of Locked Shields 2024, serving as a testament to its role in enhancing international cyber defense collaboration. Locked Shields as a platform enables countries to exchange best practices, innovate strategies, and collectively improve their cyber incident response capabilities.

Lt. Col. Urmet Tomp, the exercise director at NATO CCDCOE, highlighted the spirit of collaboration that defines Locked Shields: "This exercise is a demonstration of the power of international cooperation, transcending borders and uniting a diverse community of experts from the public and private sectors and academia. We are grateful for the dedication and expertise of our allies and all our partners, which are crucial in building a resilient global cyber defense."

Since its inception in 2010 by the CCDCOE, Locked Shields has grown into the largest live-fire cyber defense exercise globally, setting the standard for international collaboration and comprehensive cyber readiness.

The CCDCOE is a NATO-accredited knowledge hub located in Tallinn, which offers a unique interdisciplinary approach to the most relevant issues in cyber defense. The heart of the CCDCOE is a diverse group of international experts from the military, government, academia, and industry, currently representing 39 sponsoring and contributing nations. The CCDCOE encourages and supports the process of mainstreaming cybersecurity into NATO and national governance and capability within its closely connected focus areas of technology, strategy, operations, and law. The CCDCOE is also responsible for identifying and coordinating education and training solutions in the field of cyber defense operations for all NATO bodies across the alliance.