Cyber Hockey

Posted on: February 15, 2014 by Mike Smith

It’s a ferocious game!

Multiple lines of offense and defence. Rapid, probing attacks. Numerous strategies to reach the goal. Rallying resources in the field of play, teams now compete with each other on almost equal terms. Technology provides them with the tools to maximise their power, enhance their skills, protect them from counter attack, move fast and … strike the killer shot. But who will win? It only takes one breach, and the game could be over.

From local one-on-one skirmishes, escalating to all-out war, it has never been a more intensive time – the state of the art in Olympic Ice Hockey? Perhaps, but in this case I am referring the equally chilling world of Cyber Security … protecting the Games we love so much.

Securing the information infrastructure – the networks, servers, applications, data and now the cloud is essential for the successful running of the Games. Not only do the information systems distribute results to broadcasters across the world, those systems run the operations of the games themselves – the logistics, the information gathering and the processing required to make everything happen. Without Information Technology there would be no Games; at least in the form that we follow it today.

How do we achieve this Olympian security feat? A combination of technology, processes and determined focus enables us to monitor, analyse, filter and identify threats in real time … and react. We have to deal with 12 million IT security events a day, every day throughout the Games - that's 255 million security alerts; neutralised. There have been two years of hostile development since the last Olympics in London; matched by two years of progress in the IT systems for Sochi.

12 million attempts on goal every day, but in this match there is no two minute penalty, no 10 minute for misconduct, no match ban. That’s why our team needs to be one step ahead at all times.

I know it’s not Vancouver 2010, but … Go Canada!

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About Mike Smith
Chief Technology Officer, Atos Distinguished Expert, Founding member of the Atos Scientific Community
Mike has been in the IT industry for over 20 years, designing and implementing complex infrastructures that underpin key Government and private sector solutions. Setting Atos technical strategy, researching new technologies and supporting the consulting and architect communities. Previously Mike has held technical and management positions in British Rail, Sema Group and Schlumberger. He has a daughter and a son, both keen on anything but technology. Mike's sporting passion rests with Test Match Special, and is jealous/proud of his son's Ice Hockey skills.

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