Digital Agenda: EU & US conduct readiness tests for cyber attacks in “Cyber Atlantic 2011”


The first test of trans-Atlantic responses to cyber incidents, including cyber attacks, took place in Brussels today. Experts from the US Government joined counterparts from EU Member States to simulate how cyber security authorities on both sides of the Atlantic would cooperate in response to attacks. Two hypothetical scenarios were tested: a cyber-attack which attempts to extract and publish online sensitive information from the EU’s national cyber security agencies, and an attack on supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems in EU power generation equipment.

Neelie Kroes, European Commission Vice-President for the Digital Agenda said: “Recent high profile cyber attacks show that global threats need global action. Today’s exercise provides valuable lessons for specialists on both sides of the Atlantic.”

Sony Playstation, the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, European Commission and European External Action Service have all been subject to cyber attacks in recent months.

In practical terms, the EU contribution to Cyber Atlantic 2011 has been enabled by the European Commission, with key support from ENISA, the European Network and Information Security Agency, which has facilitated the exercise with the vital technical contributions provided by EU member states. The Department of Homeland Security has been in the lead for the US. The EU CERT (IP/11/694) also participated as an observer.

Cyber Atlantic 2011 grew out of the EU-US Working Group on Cyber-security and Cyber-crime, which was established in November 2010 to tackle new threats to the global networks upon which the security and prosperity of our free societies depend (see MEMO/10/597) Initial findings of the exercise will be taken into account in the Working Group’s report which will be presented to the EU-US Summit later this year. Here to read more.

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