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January 3, 2017 5:42 am

IDF Reveals Model City Used to Train Cyber Defense Units

avatar by Shiryn Solny

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The "Sim City" model. Photo: IDF.

The “Sim City” model. Photo: IDF.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) revealed on Monday one of the devices it uses to teach cyber defense units how to confront hacker-attacks.

The IDF’s C4I Directorate created a “Sim City,” a platform on which there is a model town, with residential and commercial areas, a railroad system, runway, military base, missile defense system, stock market, electricity grid and a radio station. Each part of the model city is used to simulate a different cyber attack, and IDF programmers practice keeping it safe from threats. 

In one scenario, for example, hackers infiltrate the computers of the stock market and cause a financial crisis. In another, terrorists hack into the computers guiding Israel’s missile defense system. 

IDF Corporal Hagar, a commander at the IDF’s Cyber Defense 101 training course, said Sim City “challenges and teaches our soldiers in an interesting way. We really want to show and emphasize the fact that the cyber world is also a physical world, and that there are real consequences when information and access falls into the wrong hands.”

Cpl. Hagar said that hacking poses a major global threat, explaining, “IDF activity is based on a huge amount of different computer systems. If someone manages to hack these systems, he will have access to passwords, data, information about people, the layout of our forces, and more.”

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