Soldiers receive training on emerging Cyber Electro-Magnetic Activity, or CEMA, capabilities during Cyber Blitz 19 on Aug. 28, 2019, at Aberdeen Proving Ground. (Photo by Edric Thompson/U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command)

U.S. Army Combines Fake Hacks, Natural Disaster Simulation to Test Municipal Responses

Cybersecurity experts from the U.S. military and the private sector have spent recent weeks working with two American cities to test their ability to respond during a simulated cyberattack layered with several simulated physical disruptions.

The virtual exercise, which has feigned malware and ransomware attacks against targets in Charleston, S.C., and Savannah, Ga., over the last several weeks, is aimed at testing participants’ ability to defend against digital threats while simultaneously facing an array of emergency scenarios in the physical realm. While grappling with seeming malicious software attacks, participants also have needed to deal with a fictional cargo ship accident, a flood and the failure of 911 systems.

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