ANNAPOLIS, MD—The Maryland Department of Emergency Management (MDEM), in coordination with all Cabinet agencies, hosted a statewide cybersecurity tabletop exercise today at the State House. These exercises allow critical partners to discuss plans, policies, and procedures in order to identify and address potential vulnerabilities or issues in preparation for a cybersecurity incident. During the course of the exercise, participants focused on interagency collaboration and coordination in preparing for and responding to a cybersecurity incident.
“These tabletop exercises are another prime example of our administration’s efforts to coordinate cybersecurity preparedness and response across the entire state,” said Lt. Governor Boyd Rutherford, who took part in the exercise. “The importance of exercises of this nature and the collaboration between all of the participants cannot be overstated.”
Attendees worked through a cybersecurity scenario that simulated a real-life cyber incident and tested the plans and processes of state organizations. The scenario was developed in collaboration with the State Chief Information Security Officer (SCISO), State Chief Data Officer, State Chief Privacy Officer, and exercise planners from MDEM.
“It’s hard to overemphasize the value of conducting collaborative statewide practical exercises like the one we conducted today,” said SCISO Chip Stewart. “By bringing representatives from each of the Governor’s cabinet agencies, we have an opportunity to identify gaps and improve our response processes before a real cyber incident.”
New Cybersecurity Training Partnership. In coordination with today’s exercise, the Maryland Department of Labor announced that funding from the Employment Advancement Right Now (EARN) Maryland program will be utilized to deliver cybersecurity training to State employees. In partnership with the Maryland Department of Information Technology (DoIT), EARN grantee Baltimore Cyber Range LLC (Baltimore Cyber) will provide training to 100 state employees.
“EARN Maryland has been nationally-recognized for its industry-driven approach, which has proven successful in cultivating a highly-skilled workforce for the private sector,” said Secretary Tiffany P. Robinson. “But given the ever-evolving cybersecurity threat to our state government, I am pleased we are able to invest in the training and upskilling of our own cyber workforce with these funds.”
“We welcome the opportunity to equip the information technology staff throughout State agencies with the training, the skills, and the expertise to address today’s cyber threats and protect against tomorrow’s cybersecurity challenges,” said Baltimore Cyber’s Chairman Bruce Spector. “Our training ensures that Information Technology teams are prepared to detect, mitigate, and remediate current and future attacks in a timely and cost-effective manner. We appreciate Governor Hogan’s investment in training those on the front lines of cybersecurity in our state.”