Iowa State University Competition Aims to Address the Cybersecurity Human Capital Crisis
The Engineer posted on October 06, 2017 | 1050 views

A collaboration between Iowa State University (ISU) and cloud security company ShieldX Networks is aiming to help solve the cybersecurity human capital crisis by providing students with real life experience using advanced threat detection and security automation tools.

ISU’s Information Assurance Center, which offers interactive educational programs and hosts cyber defense competitions, will use ShieldX’s cloud security platform to teach students how to effectively identify and automatically respond to suspicious activities within multi-cloud environments. This helps to prepare these students for careers in the cybersecurity industry.

Students test their skills in ISEAGE competition against real cyber security professionals using real time detection solutions. (Image courtesy of Iowa State University/ISEAGE.)
Students test their skills in ISEAGE competition against real cyber security professionals using real time detection solutions. (Image courtesy of Iowa State University/ISEAGE.)

Currently, the cybersecurity unemployment rate is zero, with over 1 million jobs unfilled. This number is expected to climb to 3.5 million by 2021. The cyber skills gap coincides with a dramatic and ongoing escalation in the frequency, intensity and cost of cyberattacks. Thirty-two percent of organizations reported being victims of cybercrime in 2016, and 72 percent of CISOs predicted that their companies would be attacked within the next year.

To solve the human capital crisis, many companies are looking to use artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies to make up for a lack of security personnel. And while significant achievements have been made in these areas, even the best technologies are only as good as the humans who are deploying it. To outpace the Black Hats, our future cyber experts must be given the knowledge and skills necessary to have an immediate impact against the cybercrime epidemic.

“Enterprises are struggling to find the talent and security solutions needed to defend against the growing sophistication and number of cyberattacks. Security innovations and more rigorous training programs are needed to solve the cybersecurity human capital crisis,” said Ratinder Ahuja, founder and CEO of ShieldX. “We are proud to be working with ISU to ensure that the next generation of cybersecurity professionals are ready to make an immediate, positive impact upon entering the workforce.”

Real World Training, Next Generation Technology

Iowa State University is one of the top destinations for aspiring cybersecurity researchers and professionals in the country. The university’s educational programs provide students with opportunities to hone their skills on simulated corporate networks that closely match real world environments.

As Cybersecurity Awareness Month kicks-off, ISU Information Assurance Center students will be testing their cybersecurity skills at the university’s annual ISEAGE (Internet-Scale Event and Attack Generation Environment) cyber defense competition on October 6-7, 2017. The competition pits the industry’s most experienced security professionals and graduate students against some of the most talented college students in the country.

The university started the ISEAGE cyber defense competition in 2005 to help prepare students for careers is cyber security. Through the joint collaboration between ISU and ShieldX, this year’s students will be armed with modern cloud security capabilities including advanced security controls and micro-segmentation on demand.

Students are required to conduct manual defenses during the competition, but afterwards students will learn how advanced threat detection and security automation tools can help improve their defenses and provide insights into the types of attacks they saw during the competition and the best way to mitigate them.

Follow the links to learn more about the ISEAGE competition and the Iowa State University Information Assurance Center.


Source: ShieldX and Iowa State University


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