The European Union and United States of America have for the first time conducted a joint test of trans-Atlantic responses to cyber incidents. The joint test took place in Brussels in early November and featured a simulation of how cyber security authorities on both sides of the Atlantic would cooperate in response to cyber attacks.
The ‘Cyber Altantic 2011’ exercise draws on lessons learned in the first pan-European cyber security exercise ‘Cyber Europe 2010’, and aims to deepen trans-Atlantic cooperation in the face of increasing threats to global internet and digital networks. It was realised by the European Commission, with key support from ENISA, and the US Department of Homeland Security.
In ‘Cyber Atlantic 2011’ EU and US experts explored how the EU and US would engage each other and cooperate in the event of cyber-attacks on their critical information infrastructures. The exercise saw the acting out of two hypothetical scenarios: 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 systems in EU power generation equipment.
The trans-Atlantic cooperation in thwarting cyber attacks comes after EU and US leaders agreed at the November 2010 EU-US summit to establish a joint working group on cyber security and crime. Initial findings of the ‘Cyber Altantic 2011’ exercise will be presented to the EU-US Summit later his year.