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March 13, 2008

BUSINESS

Chemical Firms Play DHS War Game

Air Products and Dow help government test cyber security

Melody Voith

Air Products & Chemicals and Dow Chemical just finished participating in a weeklong cyber-security exercise conducted by the Department of Homeland Security.

The Cyber Storm II simulation was designed to examine the nation's preparedness and response capabilities for a coordinated attack on information technology and communications infrastructure in industries including chemicals and transportation.

The congressionally mandated test is held once every two years. "We have expanded our exercise dramatically and taken what we learned from the first exercise and used the lessons learned in this exercise. The Internet and technology have evolved and our exercise has evolved to meet new challenges," DHS spokeswoman Laura Keehner says.

The simulation included four non-U.S. countries (Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the UK), 18 federal Cabinet-level agencies, nine states, and more than 40 private sector companies.

The fictional attack scenario took 18 months to plan and featured e-mail, phone, fax, in person plot elements, and Web communications that simulated adverse effects. The goal was to test participants' crisis response systems, policies, and procedures.

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ISSN 0009-2347
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