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Civil Cyber Range Platform for a novel approach to cybersecurity threats simulation and professional training

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New tools to help organisations become cyber-aware

Following an increase in homeworking, organisations are more vulnerable to cyberattacks than ever before. A new cybersecurity training initiative aims to mitigate this risk through practical knowledge and hands-on practice.

Digital Economy
Security

Too many companies make the mistake of seeing cybersecurity as an ‘IT problem’. But nothing could be further from the truth. “A phishing email sent to an employee and a click of a mouse is all it takes to give a hacker a direct path to an organisation’s network,” explains Rodrigo Diaz-Rodriguez, head of the Atos Cybersecurity Unit. According to Diaz-Rodriguez, training is crucial to helping organisations become cyber-aware. “With the COVID-19 pandemic bringing an increase in homeworking, companies are now particularly vulnerable to malicious cyberattacks,” he says. “As such, the need for effective cybersecurity training is more pressing than ever.” Meeting this need is the EU-funded CYBERWISER.EU project. “From teaching employees to strengthen their password to helping system administrators implement comprehensive protection strategies, CYBERWISER.EU helps organisations mitigate their risk of a cyberattack,” adds Diaz-Rodriguez.

Hands-on experience

The main aim of the project is to increase an organisation’s capacity to address advanced cyberthreats. “We do this by providing tailored and efficient training that addresses the specific needs of professionals while also raising the organisation’s awareness about cybersecurity,” remarks Diaz-Rodriguez. All 22 courses are delivered via the project’s user-friendly cyber range platform. The platform leverages state-of-the-art methodologies and tools and uses a combination of theory and practice to help an organisation develop a robust cyber response and decision-making processes. Courses are comprised of a variety of presentations, audio content, quizzes and hands-on exercises. “One of the platform’s most popular features is the opportunity to use our cyberattack simulator,” explains Diaz-Rodriguez. “By playing the role of ‘defender’ or ‘attacker’, participants get hands-on practice with responding to a cyberattack and a unique understanding of how they work.” Diaz-Rodriguez adds that courses are available for all skill levels. “CYBERWISER.EU is completely flexible and customisable, meaning it can be tailored to meet your organisation’s unique needs – and budget,” he notes. “Whether your staff have little to no knowledge of cybersecurity or you are an advanced IT team looking to enhance your cybersecurity capabilities, CYBERWISER.EU has a solution for you.”

Towards commercialisation

During trial runs in the transport, academia and energy sectors, CYBERWISER.EU provided training to more than 500 individuals from over 20 institutions. Based on this success, the project team is currently preparing to make the training commercially available. “Our idea is to develop a modular offering that allows users to access training on specific skills and topics, including malware, spoofing, phishing scams, spam emails, SQL injection, and password cracking,” says Diaz-Rodriguez. The project has received expressions of interest from 41 organisations, with 146 users already using a beta version of the commercial platform via a free trial offer.

Keywords

CYBERWISER.EU, cyberattacks, cybersecurity, hacker, phishing, homeworking, cyberthreats, IT

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