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A two-day Vicious Circle 2 national cyber exercise was concluded Wednesday, the first exercise of its kind to be held in Israel in terms of both its complexity and the range of participants. The exercise simulated cyberattack scenarios against government agencies, public bodies and various sectors in the Israeli economy.

National Cyber Directorate head Yigal Unna issued a statement saying: “We have successfully concluded the most extensive national exercise that has ever been held until now. We tested national civilian and security systems in a wide-ranging cyberattack scenario as part of the ongoing activity regarding Israel’s national readiness for cyberattacks.”

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The exercise was conducted by the Prime Minister’s Office National Cyber Directorate and included the Prime Minister’s Office, the National Security Council, the Defense Ministry National Emergency Authority and Director of Security of the Defense Establishment, the Transportation Ministry, the Health Ministry, the Finance Ministry, the Energy Ministry, the Public Security Ministry, the Interior Ministry, the Justice Ministry, the security services, the IDF, Home Front Command, Israel Railways, Haifa Port, Ashdod Port, the Shipping Authority, the Israel Ports Company, oil infrastructures and 14 local municipalities.

The goal of the exercise was to continue improving the level of national readiness for cyber events while strengthening inter-agency cooperation. The exercise was set in advance as part of the annual exercise program.

Among the issues that were emphasized during the national exercise were practicing and improving operational plans for cyber events, cooperation between security and civilian agencies, organizational and economic functioning while under cyberattack, the coordinating and sharing of information, media and public diplomacy, and legal aspects.

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