Baltic states urge NATO to bolster cyber-defense

Danish soldier participating in 2009 NATO Exercise Combined Endeavor.

From AFP:  NATO members must bolster their ability to fend off Internet-based attacks, Estonian Defence Minister Mart Laar, whose country fell victim to a "cyber-war" in 2007, said Thursday.

"The common position of the Baltic countries is that NATO’s actions in the domain of cyber defence have to be more ambitious," Laar was quoted as saying by the Baltic News Service after a meeting with his counterparts from Latvia and Lithuania.

After five decades of Soviet rule ended in 1991, Estonia opted to go hi-tech as fast as possible.

The nation of 1.3 million became one of the world’s most cyber-focused states, earning the nickname "E-stonia".

Since a politically-charged "cyber-war" in 2007 widely blamed on Russian hackers, Estonia has become a leader in finding ways to defeat online attacks, and hosts NATO’s IT-defence facility.

It also created a volunteer unit of cyber-experts last year within the Estonian Defence League, a part-time force equivalent to the National Guard in the United States.  (photo:

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