The US and Japan have conducted a joint cyber security exercise in the Indo Pacific region, as number of cyber attacks have increased alarmingly in 2021.
United States Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), Department of State (DOS), and Department of Energy (DOE) have lent their support to the Japan–U.S. Industrial Control Systems (ICS) Cybersecurity Week which was held from October 25-29, 2021. Hosted by Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Industrial Cyber Security Center of Excellence (ICSCoE) under the Information-technology Promotion Agency (IPA), the training brought together 40 operational technology (OT) and information technology (IT) professionals from the Indo-Pacific region, officials said.
Trainees represented the electricity, oil and gas, water, and construction sectors – some of the sectors most at risk of cyber attacks. They were joined by current trainees and graduates of the ICSCoE year-long “Core Human Resource Development Programme.” This year, experts from the European Union officially co-sponsored the event, making this the first “Japan-U.S.-EU Industrial Control Systems Cybersecurity Week for the Indo-Pacific Region,” officials added.
The weeklong training, held virtually, brought together OT and IT cybersecurity experts from critical infrastructure operators, national Computer Security Incident Response Teams (CSIRTs), and policy experts from relevant ministries and national authorities.
Hands on Training
The participants had opportunities to conduct hands-on training remotely and study a variety of cybersecurity-related topics, including supply chains, process automation and workforce development from experts from the United States, Japan, and the EU. They also shared their experiences and views with colleagues in the region.
The programme underscores a shared commitment by the United States, Japan, and EU to ensure an open, interoperable, reliable, and secure cyber space, while building a foundation to jointly address the growing cybersecurity threats with like-minded Indo-Pacific and European partners. This was the fourth iteration of the Japan-U.S. ICS cybersecurity exercise, which aims to improve the security of critical cyber infrastructure in partner countries across the Indo-Pacific region.