European Union tests cyber resilience with simulated attack

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European Union tests cyber resilience with simulated attack

The European Union began testing its cyber-defense responsiveness on Friday with a simulated attack on a fictitious Finnish power company as the bloc tried to strengthen its digital defenses amid concerns about a potential attack.

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The Ukraine fell victim to a cyber attack that brought down around 70 government websites, which was the start of the cyber exercise. Ukraine s security service said on Friday it saw signs that Russia was behind the attack. The EU's foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, warned the EU's defense ministers this week about the need to bolster cyber capacities.

The Finnish attack is part of a six week exercise to stress-test Europe's resilience, strengthen preparedness and cooperation among member states, and improve the effectiveness of a joint response. The tests are expected to conclude at the end of February during a meeting of EU foreign ministers.

Read more: EU to launch Large-Scale Cyberattack Exercise on Supply Chains.

In the Finnish simulation, a major cyber security incident is detected in software used by a major energy company, according to diplomatic notes seen by Bloomberg. The notes note that the high penetration of software across sectors and member states risks spreading the impact across Europe.

The EU response anticipates that member states working groups on cyber issues will be set up in order to monitor the impact and find the origin of the crisis, as well as take possible actions to mitigate the consequences of the attack.

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