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07 1 2016

NATO expands cyber defence coverage


One year after the declaration of the Joint Formal Acceptance Inspection for the NATO Computer Incident Response Capability – Full Operational Capability (NCIRC FOC) in April 2015, the enhanced cyber defence coverage has expanded to protect three additional sites: the Combined Air Operations Centre (CAOC) Torrejón, the NATO Point of Presence in Spain, and the Battlefield Information Collection and Exploitation System (BICES) systems in Brussels.

As of June 2016, these sites are protected with NCIRC FOC capabilities. The NATO Computer Incident Response Capability currently provides centralized protection on the sites of the Headquarters, Commands, Agencies and Nations.

Joint airspace surveillance

Established on 1 January 2013, CAOC Torrejón's primary mission is to plan, direct, coordinate, monitor, analyze and report on the operations of Air Policing assets assigned to it in peacetime, following the directives of NATO Allied Air Command. To fulfill this joint airspace surveillance, CAOC Torrejón has under its tactical command all radars, Control and Reporting Centres and Quick Reaction Alert aircraft from Allies located in the southern half of Europe.

The Point of Presence in Spain, previously located at the Allied Force Command Madrid (HQ FCMD), moved to Torrejón Air Base when the HQ was deactivated in 2013. The Spanish Point of Presence connects many Spanish Defence Units and enclaves to the NATO Wide Area Network. Fundamental support during the NCIRC FOC delivery was provided by CSU Madrid, Allied Command Operations (ACO) and the Spanish Ministry of Defence for the accreditation of the installations.

In addition to CAOC Torrejón and the Spanish Point of Presence, the project team, with the excellent support from BICES personnel, successfully delivered the protection of the NCIRC FOC capabilities for the BICES systems in Brussels. BICES coordinates a classified multinational system between national military intelligence organizations and NATO to share and exchange information and intelligence.

NATO expands cyber defence coverage

Continual enhancements to NATO cyber protection

The BICES Group Executive and the NATO Communications and Information Agency (NCI Agency) have signed a Service Level Agreement for the provision of Intrusion Detection Service for the multinational BICES network.

With the excellent support from Bi-SC AIS Programme Management and Integration Capability (PMIC), the NCIRC FOC project team was able to effectively execute and monitor the implementation of these sites. The quality assurance of each delivery was assured based on a hybrid process that involves technical phases with a very detailed verification and validation process. This approach is used with several on-going projects such as the NCIRC FOC adaptations for the New NATO Headquarters Active Network infrastructure, the NATO Force Integration Units (NFIUs), Multinational Division Southeast and the 10 Additional Sites NCIRC FOC Project.

As cyber threats increase and the information infrastructures constantly evolve, the mission to continually enhance the cyber protection of NATO operations continues.


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