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SECURITY > Cybersecurity

Gov’t to conduct largest-ever cyberattack exercise in November in preparation for 2020 Games

  • September 24, 2019
  • , Yomiuri evening edition , p. 1
  • JMH Translation

The government will conduct a cyberattack exercise in November using a scenario where key infrastructure is hacked right before the start of next summer’s Tokyo Games. Over 4,000 people are expected to participate, making it the largest-ever exercise. The scenario for the exercise will be made more complicated with an eye to enhancing preparedness and improving responses to emergencies.


The government has designated 14 fields, including electricity, railways, aviation, telecommunications, and water supply, as key infrastructure, recognizing that the suspension or decrease of these services may cause huge confusion.


The exercise is scheduled for Nov. 18. Service providers in the 14 fields, concerned ministries and agencies as well as the Tokyo Organizing Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games are expected to participate. Since fiscal 2006, the government has conducted a cross-sectional exercise each year. The exercise this year is expected to attract the largest-ever number of participants. Some 3,077 people participated in the exercise held last December.


The exercise will be conducted based on a scenario in which key infrastructure come under cyberattack and system disruptions occur right before the start of the Tokyo Games, which will kick off on July 24 next year. Using the information sharing system of the “cybersecurity incident response coordination center,” businesses and concerned ministries and agencies will share information on the attack and the resulting damage and confirm procedures for restoring the systems. The government launched the center in April this year.


In the past, the exercise focused on relaying information on system disruptions. To make the exercise more practical, this time the government will expand it to involve decision-making and information-sharing. It will also use a more complicated scenario, which envisages the spread of system disruptions to other fields and the suspension of several infrastructure services due to simultaneous attacks.


The government will analyze the results of the exercise to identify problems and build a more resilient system that can cope with disruptions in partnership with service providers so that the Games can be carried out as scheduled next year even if key infrastructure were exposed to cyberattack. (Abridged)

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