BRUSSELS --- Last week, a kick-off meeting was held at EDA to launch the contractual work on the Cyber Defence Situation Awareness Package Rapid Research Prototype (CySAP-RRP) project, in the presence of representatives of the three contributing Member States: Spain (lead country), Germany and Italy. The industry consortium in charge of the project provided Member States with an overview of the project management plan describing tasks, milestones and project deliverables.
The project was conceived as the first step of a spiral development in order to set up a full Cyber Situation Awareness operational capability. The CySAP-RRP will be built upon previous work done by EDA to develop a Target Architecture and System Requirements for an enhanced Cyber Defence Situation Awareness Capability.
The core objectives of the project include essential research challenges to assist military decision-makers in cyberspace and to set the basis for a fully-fledged Command and Control (C2) system for cyber operations.
CySAP is at the forefront of technology development with the aim of obtaining a common and standardized cyber defence planning and management functional area service. The research challenges are to provide a comprehensive understanding of the cyber defence elements in the planning and conduct phase of military operations in which cyberspace is now recognised and treated as any other domain such as land, air or maritime.
Under the framework of EDA, the three Member States participating in CySAP agreed a common set of requirements and a Target Architecture for the capability. CySAP follows a modular approach allowing to have a flexible set of functionalities by exercising a system engineering process. Current market available solutions for cyber situational awareness do not meet the entire spectrum of military requirements such as risk analysis, cyber related Courses of Action (CoA) development and assessment as well as support to decision-making.
CySAP will provide situational analysis that can be integrated into the overall common operational picture of a mission, as a cyber information layer able to provide timely and accurate situational awareness. CySAP is set to obtain innovative solutions by joining efforts of leading defence industries and researchers in Europe.
The architectural design comprises several spirals to be completed in the next years subject to future investments. The possibility to introduce CySAP follow-on activities into PESCO or the EDIDP are currently explored and assessed. The next progress review meeting is scheduled for September 2019 in Spain.
The updated EU Capability Development Plan (CDP) endorsed by the EDA Steering Board in June 2018 reconfirmed cyber defence as a priority for capability development in the EU. The CDP recognises the need for defensive cyber operations in any operational context, based on sophisticated current and predictive cyberspace situational awareness. This includes the ability to combine large amounts of data and intelligence from numerous sources in support of rapid decision making and increased automation of the data gathering, analysis and decision-support process.
In November 2018, the European Council adopted an updated version of the EU cyber defence policy framework (CDPF). Supporting the development of Member States’ cyber defence capabilities is a priority area where the now established CySAP project serves as a core to guide future research and operational capabilities.