UK forces lead live-fire cyber war exercise

More than 750 cyber security specialists from around the world took part in one of the largest live-fire cyber war exercises, which saw them respond to a series of simulated cyber threats that mirrored the tactics deployed by Russia in the war. in Ukraine, including attacks on critical networks, industrial control systems and unmanned robotic systems.

The Defense Cyber ​​​​Marvel 2 (DCM2) war game exercise was led by British Army specialists, and brought together 750 experts from 11 countries, including Ghana, India, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Oman, Ukraine and the US . They were put through their paces at a joint in-person virtual event hosted in the Estonian capital Tallinn, home to Nato’s Cooperative Cyber ​​Defense Center of Excellence (CCDoE).

The UK contingent includes 900 personnel drawn from the Army, Royal Navy, and RAF.

The seven-day competition, which ended last week, saw participants judged on the effectiveness and speed of their response, and how quickly they can identify and adapt to new threats. The event also offers participants the opportunity to share learnings and best practices with their counterparts from other countries.

“The modern battlefield is evolving like never before; It is therefore critical that our personnel are trained to quickly adapt to this critical domain and identify cyber threats with capability and speed,” said defense secretary Ben Wallace.

Tom Copinger-Symes, deputy commander of UK Strategic Command, added: “Events like Defense Cyber ​​Marvel showcase the talent we already have in defence. They can exercise and learn with people from a wide variety of countries, backgrounds and specializations – all united by a common purpose – to improve their skills in a good way and protect our people, our prosperity and our principle.

“At UK Strategic Command we are committed to finding and nurturing individuals with skills, particularly those who are about to complete their studies and are eager for a unique challenge on the front line of UK defence.”

The event was created by the Army Cyber ​​​​Association, a volunteer-run group formed by officers of the Royal Signals before the 2020 formation of the 13th Signal Regiment.

Army Cyber ​​​​Association chair Ian Hargreaves said: “Our focus has always been to identify talent, identify and develop with a big wraparound of innovation. We need to change or us to stay ahead of those who want to harm us, and Defense Cyber ​​​​Marvel 2 is the next evolution of our collective pioneering education.

“The exercise ensures that everyone who participates understands the potential and risks that cyber space presents and gives them the opportunity to experiment and develop their cyber skills,” he said. “It is designed to foster the UK’s most experienced, hardened defense cyber specialists.”

Except for the revival of 13th Signals, which previously existed under various guises between the Second World War and the mid-1990s, the MoD poured resources into addressing the threat to UK interests from the possibility of a full cyber war, especially one that can still improve. if the conflict in Ukraine escalates.

Last year it introduced a number of platforms and services from Immersive Labs designed to strengthen its defensive security and workforce capabilities, improve the quality of its cyber war games, and ensure its software development lifecycle.

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