Two years ago, IBM opened one of the nation’s first commercial cybersecurity ranges in Cambridge, Mass., to let companies practice responding to simulated cyberattacks. It describes the experience as “a game of Clue mixed with a Disney roller-coaster ride.”
In a windowless bunker packed with a data center, wall-to-wall monitors, atmospheric controls, dozens of work stations and a functional TV studio, participants have about four hours to investigate and respond to a fictional data breach. It’s like an escape room for security nerds.
The experience proved so popular — about 2,000 people, including chief executives and entire corporate boards, have played IBM’s game, which has an eight-month waiting list — that IBM decided to build a second range. But this time, it’s going mobile.
The move is a reflection of the extent to which the threat of cyberattacks has captured the attention of organizations of all kinds, including the technology companies Facebook and Google, banks, military installations and those who run industrial control systems, like electricity and water providers. Tampering was a major issue in the election of President Trump, of course, and is cause for concern as the midterm elections approach.
While companies are scrambling to get up to speed, they can’t always send an entire team away for a few days of training on how to spot and respond to a cyberattack.
Starting this week the company is introducing its mobile cyber command center, tucked into a heavily customized semitrailer truck. What IBM calls its “cyber tactical operations center” will make stops at college campuses and security-focused events before heading to Europe for a lengthy tour.
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