Fifty military cybersecurity experts are defending the online infrastructure of their imaginary nations at the Cyber Endeavor X Games this week.
Now in its sixth year, the five-day competition is being held at Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute.
“It’s very easy to suspend your disbelief and believe that you’re actually in a real environment with real-word things happening and responding to those events in the context of the exercise,” said Michael Massa, program manager at CMU’s CERT division, or omputer Emergency Readiness Team.
CMU works closely with US-CERT and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to improve the nation’s cybersecurity infrastructure.
Austin Whisnant, cyber security engineer at CMU’s CERT division, manages the simulation.
She said the participants – mostly Army and Navy reservists – are divided into four teams, each representing a country. Teams spent the first couple days last week familiarizing themselves with their country’s infrastructure and patching weaknesses in their