Paris 2024 gears up for unprecedented cybersecurity challenge.

Preparations for the Paris 2024 Olympics and Paralympics are underway amidst significant concerns regarding cybersecurity threats. Organisers anticipate immense pressure on the Games this summer, with organised crime, activists, and hostile states identified as primary threats.

Collaborating closely with the French National Agency for Information Security (ANSSI) and cybersecurity firms Cisco and Eviden, Paris 2024 is intensifying efforts to mitigate the impact of potential cyber attacks. Vincent Strubel, ANSSI’s director general, acknowledges the inevitability of attacks but emphasizes the importance of minimizing their impact.

Strubel expresses confidence in Paris 2024’s readiness, highlighting extensive preparation efforts and thorough testing of all 500 sites and venues. The Games will operate from a secure cybersecurity operation center, location undisclosed for security reasons.

To bolster defenses, Paris 2024 has enlisted ethical hackers to stress-test systems and leverages artificial intelligence to identify potential threats. Franz Regul, IT managing director at Paris 2024, underscores the role of AI in distinguishing between minor disruptions and catastrophic incidents.

With expectations of cybersecurity events multiplying tenfold compared to the Tokyo Games, Eric Greffier, head of partnerships at Cisco, underscores the rapid evolution of cyber threats over the past four years.

The specter of past incidents looms large, exemplified by the 2018 “Olympic Destroyer” virus targeting the Pyeongchang Winter Games. While Moscow denied involvement, the US Justice Department indicted six Russian intelligence agency hackers for a broader hacking campaign, including attacks on the Pyeongchang Games.

Strubel refrains from singling out potential attackers, emphasizing that such designations fall within the purview of state authorities. However, French President Emmanuel Macron has expressed concerns about potential malicious targeting of the Paris Olympics by Russia.

Amidst a complex global backdrop, including Russia’s actions in Ukraine and Israel’s military operations in Gaza, Paris 2024 navigates unprecedented cybersecurity challenges as it prepares for the upcoming Games.