AIT and IAEA have signed an agreement for a four-year programme to build awareness and skills around cyber security for nuclear safety in member states.
The AIT Austrian Institute of Technology and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have strengthened their close cooperation of several years in the development of technologies, processes and tools for the protection of digital systems, as well as the implementation of special training and education courses on computer security for industrial control systems. On 10 May at the AIT headquarters in Vienna, Lydie Evrard, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security, Managing Director of AIT Anton Plimon and Helmut Leopold, Head of the Center for Digital Safety & Security, signed a four-year programme to build awareness and competencies around cyber security for nuclear safety in IAEA Member States. The IAEA then appointed the AIT as the world’s first IAEA COLLABORATING CENTRE “for Information and Computer Security for Nuclear Security”.
Based on the core cyber security competencies established at AIT in the area of control systems for critical infrastructures, AIT has thus been appointed the official security partner of the IAEA. Within the framework of a specially designed programme, AIT will therefore make an important contribution to increasing cyber security for critical infrastructures worldwide over the next four years. In addition to the special knowledge of the AIT Cyber Security Experts, the AIT Cyber Range, one of the most modern cyber security training environments, will also be used.
“The Agency’s work in promoting and strengthening computer security in the nuclear sector will be significantly supported by the agreement with the AIT,” said Lydie Evrard, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security, at the signing ceremony of the agreement held at the AIT facilities in Vienna. “AIT’s expertise and state-of-the-art facilities will support high-quality training courses and computer security demonstration sessions that can have a significant impact in capacity building, as well as in research and development activities,” she added.
Anton Plimon, AIT Managing Director: “We are delighted about the excellent cooperation with the IAEA and the future collaboration, from which all participants and the location will benefit extraordinarily”.
Helmut Leopold, Head of AIT Center for Digital Safety & Security, emphasised that the appointment as IAEA Collaborating Centre is a great honour and a unique selling point for AIT: “We are thus making a concrete contribution to qualification and competence transfer in the field of cyber security”.
After the ceremony, Helmut Leopold led the IAEA delegation on a short tour of important future-oriented research areas at the AIT Center for Digital Safety & Security, such as the Photonics & Quantum Communication Laboratory and the new AIT Cyber Range – Training Center.
AIT Cyber Range – Training Center opened at AIT headquarters
In the course of the ceremony, the new AIT Cyber Range – Training Center was officially presented and opened. This is a flexible IT simulation environment for cyber security training. In the AIT Cyber Range, IT infrastructures and communication processes can be simulated realistically and the detection and countering of a wide range of cyber attacks can be trained. The AIT Cyber Range allows individually simulated extreme situations to be trained even in critical infrastructures where “real” tests in the real world are not possible for security or cost reasons. A special feature of the AIT Cyber Range platform is that it can be flexibly and easily adapted to the individual wishes of training partners worldwide via secure cloud services.
In the week before the ceremony, IAEA members from South America had already successfully participated in a training course lasting several days at the new AIT Cyber Range – Training Center.
Paul Smith, Head of the AIT Cyber Range, introduced the new training centre to the visitors: “With the newly built Cyber Range Training Centre at our headquarters, we will have even more scope to design and offer training courses in a short time and with the quick involvement of our cyber security experts.
The news report on the ceremony can be found on the IAEA website here.