Service members and governmental Civilians representing U.S. Cyber Command, to include the 704th Military Intelligence (MI) Brigade, 780th MI Brigade (Cyber) and U.S. Navy Cyber Command, teach high school students from throughout Anne Arundel County Public Schools about cyber security at a CyberPatriot Summer Camp on July 29, 2019. (Steven Stover/780th Military Intelligence Brigade)

How COVID-19 Changed Cyber Command’s ‘Cyber Flag’ Exercise

This year when U.S. Cyber Command convened with allied countries to test how they would collectively defend against a cyber-operation targeting allied networks, the units came together for what appeared to be a straightforward simulation of an attack against a European airbase.

The worldwide coronavirus pandemic made the simulation less than straightforward.

For the first time ever, participants conducted the exercise from home on a new platform, according to U.S. military cyber commanders involved in the exercise. The annual simulation, which simulated an attack that impacted both information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT), took place on the Persistent Cyber Training Environment (PCTE).

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