AFP conducts week-long cyber-defense exercise

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) kicked off a week-long Cyber Defense Exercise (CYDEX) on Monday as part of the current AFP Joint “DAGIT-PA.”

The annual unilateral maneuver known as “DAGIT-PA” aims to improve the country’s land, air, and maritime assets in combined interoperability operations.

The CYDEX is being held both physically and virtually in order to improve the military’s cyber forces’ preparedness and capability in conducting Joint Cyberspace Operations.

In a statement, Maj. Gen. Francisco Ariel Felicidario III, AFP Education Training and Doctrine Command chief and AJEX DAGIT PA exercise director, said that “the goal of this year’s CYDEX is to protect, detect, respond, and recover from cyber-attacks in order to maintain the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of the AFP Cyber Infostructure and Systems.”

The AFP Cyber Units from the AFP Cyber Group; Communications, Electronics and Information Systems Service AFP; and the Major Service Cyber Units including the composite cyber units under the operational control of the Visayas Command are all participating in the exercise.

From November 8 to 12, they will take part in both physical and virtual events, including knowledge sharing on response and recovery processes, vulnerability assessment, defensive cyber operations, and a simulation exercise on active defense operations.

The CYDEX is being held in an operating environment in which the AFP has designated cyberspace as the fourth domain of operations.

In this scenario, the AFP Cyber Forces developed a Cyber Warfare and Cyberspace Operations Strategy to coordinate their efforts in executing various virtual operations.

The AFP’s Infostructure will be protected during the exercise by a closed network capable of delivering secure communications and transmission of classified data among its units.

“The end state of our CYDEX is a capable and competent AFP Cyber Defense Force that is well-equipped with the necessary skills in executing Joint Cyberspace Operations for the protection of the AFP Infostructure,” Felicidario said.

From November 8 to 19, AJEX “DAGIT-PA” will be held to integrate the Major Services’ joint operations capabilities in a training environment that simulates events on the battlefield.

It also works to promote interoperability and foster unity of effort across all AFP units.

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