Latvia and Republic of Korea joined forces to participate in cyber defence exercise “Locked Shields 2021”

The largest and most complex international live-fire cyber defence exercise in the world, Locked Shields 2021 organised by NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) came to the end last week. For the first time in the history of Locked Shields a European – Asian joint team has participated in the exercise. Cybersecurity experts of Latvia and Republic of Korea joined forces as a one team to compete against other 21 national (and joined) teams in this exercise.

The task of the Latvian – Korean joint team was to defend against cyberattacks and protect infrastructure in accordance to the scenario while advancing national cybercapabilities and developing internal and external cooperation.

This year all teams practiced defence of complex IT networks in the event of a large-scale cyberattack. In addition to maintaining more than nearly 5000 virtualised systems including realistic replications of critical national infrastructure, while experiencing more than 2500 attacks, the teams had to tackle the influence of information operations.

“Cooperation is one of the key aspects for the incident response, which becomes more critical in the context of a large scale cyber-attack. This year, the teams from Latvia and Republic of Korea joined forces to enter the challenging game network of Locked Shields. The cooperation at such a diverse international level was attempted for the first time, and came with its own challenges, novel approaches, strategies, and experimentation. This permitted to raise common understanding and joint evolution not only as individual team participants, but as experts engaged in daily cyber-defense activities at national level. Most importantly, this experience allowed us to identify and establish a solid ground for further cooperation,” summarized Dr Bernhards Blumbergs, a cyber security expert from CERT.LV and experienced member of Locked Shields.

More information about “Locked Shields” is available here:



Image: NATO CCDCOE archive