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Cyber Range 101 - Part 1: What is and why should you have a cyber range?

Example Virtualized Cyber Range

For those out there who are not 20 year cyber range exercise veterans, you are probably wondering what is a cyber range and what are they good for (or why do I need one). Cyber ranges are physical or virtual (or hybrid) replicas of your production environment that you can be used for cyber education and for strengthening your cyber protection.

The first question to ask is why do I need one. Cyber ranges can be used to hone one’s skills; train the new cyber/IT interns in how to respond to a cyber event, validate that your production environments are cyber protected (both defensively and offensively), and even do what if scenarios so you can be ready for any cyber event.

Take the time to explore your particular situation and ask these questions:

  • Do we need a standard education environment or do we need something that directly mimics our production environment for Cyber Testing/Exploration?

  • Are we offering standard training for a group of students/individuals with a set of standard achievement goals?

  • Do we have content or the ability to develop training content around a cyber range?

  • Do we have IT admin support to build and maintain the cyber range?

  • Are we able to use a virtual range or do we need real hardware to train on (or a hybrid)?

  • Are our users remote/global or local in house?

  • How many users and how frequently will they use the cyber range?

  • What sort of activities do we need to support in our cyber range?

  • Do we need a formal LMS (Learning Management System) to wrap around the range for training lab deployment with metrics and assessments?

There are many options to how one can go about meeting your needs but most of them involve either a "simulated cyber range", a canned cyber range, or a "standard cyber course training environment". While these offer skill building, they don't always accurately reflect your production environment or train you on the specific cyber use cases needed for your environment.

Please reach out to us with your thoughts on the above and stayed tuned for our Part 2: Cyber Ranges for your Teaching Environment.

For more information or to try building your own cyber range yourself, just reach out to us (Click here!) and request more info on custom cyber ranges

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