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Ten countries orchestrated the possibility of a massive financial cyber attack

Many of the world’s leading economies and international financial organizations have tested in a coordinated way what would happen if a major cyber attack hit the global financial and banking system. The purpose of the simulation is to help develop opportunities for countries to work together to address similar threats.

Recently, a 10-day test simulating the impact of a major cyber attack on the global financial system was conducted with the participation of 10 countries. The purpose of the test was, in part, to enable countries to take effective and cooperative action against similar threats in the future, and to reduce the impact of a potentially dangerous attack, according to the exclusive information. Reuters.

The simulated attack has been planned since last year and is led by Israel They tested situations such as mass leaks of sensitive data on the so-called dark web, but they also looked at what would happen if hackers tried to wreak havoc on financial markets by spreading fake news.

The simulation showed that such a severe attack could put large banks in a serious liquidity crunch. Indeed, if a general panic appeared in the financial sector, the masses of depositors could suddenly withdraw their money. In such a situation, states must be prepared to intervene appropriately.

The Israeli government stressed that these threats can be realistic and that the only effective defense against them is global cooperation in the field of cybersecurity. Misha Weiss, the head of financial cybersecurity at the Treasury Department, confirmed that the attackers were 10 steps ahead of the defenders.

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Ten countries and many international organizations have coordinated the possibility of a dangerous financial cyber attackSource: dpa Picture-Alliance via AFP / Annette Riddle

The “Collective Strength” initiative included countries such as the United States, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Thailand. In addition, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) participated.

Participants also discussed the possibilities of multilateral responses. Options such as coordinated public holidays, debt grace periods, various financing arrangements or mitigation of risks from exposure to major international currencies have emerged.

The simulation was originally planned as part of the Dubai World Expo, but was eventually moved to Jerusalem due to the coronavirus pandemic, and participants joined in a video conference.

No information has been released yet on the simulation results due to the size and importance of the test. However, it is important to note that based on the information available, this was not an actual stress test, That is, they did not examine the reaction of states, financial institutions and organizations to a possible global cyber attack, but only modeled the attack path with the participation of the mentioned countries and international associations.