The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence is contributing to National Cybersecurity Awareness Month by focusing on the development of new generations of cybersecurity professionals and raising awareness about the importance of simple measures for online security. National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, now in its 11th year, reminds us that the security of our critical networked systems is a shared responsibility, and that we can all help to increase the resiliency of the country's critical infrastructure.
Critical infrastructure and workforce development were the themes on October 15, 2014, when the NCCoE showcased the work of student guest researchers from across the University System of Maryland. The guest researchers, representing the College Park, Baltimore County, and University College campuses of the University of Maryland, presented their work on real-world cybersecurity challenges in the health IT, financial services, and energy sectors to an audience of representatives from academia, government agencies, and industry -- including several of the NCCoE’s National Cybersecurity Excellence Partners. Ari Schwartz, Senior Director for Cybersecurity on the White House National Security Council, gave opening remarks. The guest researchers’ presentations were followed by a panel discussion, “How to Meet the Critical Need for Cybersecurity Professionals.” IBM’s Dan Chenok moderated panelists representing RSA Archer, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education, the Federal IT Security Institute, and the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Demonstrations of the guest researchers’ work followed.
On October 24, 2014, NCCoE staff members helped to raise awareness of cybersecurity measures and careers during hands-on demonstrations for participants in Frontiers in Science and Medicine Day at the Universities at Shady Grove. Nearly 600 middle school students from two Montgomery County schools checked the strength of their passwords, discussed the privacy issues raised by sharing information online, and used a tool that shows hackers infiltrating a network. They took away tip sheets from the Department of Homeland Security's "Stop. Think. Connect." campaign to help them use the Internet securely.