You do not have to look very far to see the impact that cyber crime is having on our modern world. More than one top U.S. cyber-security expert is balming North Korea for the recent wanttocry (1) virus that basically took people’s computer hostage demanding a ransom payment and lately they are given credit for stealing hundreds of millions of dollars in Bitcoins ( cryrptocurrency )
Russia is being blamed for hacking the Democratic National Committee’s ( DNC) emails during the 2016 election period with the intention of swaying the outcome. Social networks like Facebook and twitter unwittingly aided Russia by setting fake american looking accounts and pushing a false narrative.
One victim (?) of this so far has been the Russian cyber-security software company Kaspersky labs, which is now banned by the U.S. government. Were they a Russian spy company hiding in plain site or a legitimate a virus blocker? It is hard to tell the good guys from the bad guys.
As computers get faster with new technology like quantum computers using artificial intelligence entities, cyber-security will enter a whole new and scary phase. It is estimated that by 2037 for ever dollar spent for innovation at least another dollar will be spent to protect it. One thing is for sure and that is that the area of cyber-security is a hot area for a career and students the world over should take note that talented cyber-security experts will command a high salary.
Here is what Cisco Systems says about Cyber-security in 2017.
The National Science Foundation (NSF) recently gave the nation’s cyber-security professionals a boost with the inclusion of four new universities into its CyberCorps: Scholarship for Service (SFS) program.
NSF awarded nearly $5.7 million, with an expected total of almost $16.6 million over the next five years, to universities in Illinois, Maryland, Louisiana and Texas. The schools will use the money to provide scholarships consisting of full tuition and a stipend up to $34,000 to individuals willing to work after graduation in a cybersecurity position for federal, state, local or tribal governments.
The following universities received the awards:
Purdue University Northwest, $1.2 million ($3.6 million over five years)
University of Maryland, College Park, $1.6 million ($5 million over five years)
Louisiana Tech University, $1.3 million ($3.5 million over five years)
Texas A&M University Main Campus, $1.5 million ($4.4 million over five years)
said Victor Piotrowski, CyberCorps SFS lead program director in NSF’s Education and Human Resources Directorate.
Each school provided evidence of a strong academic program in cybersecurity, including designation as a Center of Excellence by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security. They also bring unique additions to the CyberCorps SFS portfolio of 70 schools.
For example, the University of Maryland will integrate CyberCorps SFS into the Advanced Cybersecurity Experience for Students (ACES), a cybersecurity curriculum created as a private-public partnership with Northrop Grumman Corporation. It consists of two academic programs that students take over the course of four years: the ACES Living-Learning Program for freshmen and sophomores, and coursework for juniors and seniors called the ACES Minor that leads to an academic minor in cybersecurity.
Other additions include on the path to be a cyber-security expert.
The first bachelor of science program in Cyber Engineering developed by Louisiana Tech. A newly formed Cyber Operations Special Unit leveraged by Texas A&M at its Corps of Cadets. Purdue University Northwest’s establishment of a seamless pathway for students from community colleges to study cybersecurity at four-year schools.
Agreements with community colleges also played an important role in making the new awards. Purdue University Northwest proposed partnerships with Moraine Valley Community College and Indiana Ivy Tech, Indiana’s community college system. In addition, Texas A&M proposed a new partnership that will permit students from Houston Community College to enroll in Texas A&M to continue their studies.
In 2015, community college students began participating in the CyberCorps SFS program. Currently, sophomores at community colleges are eligible for one year of support if a formal agreement exists between the community college and a four-year institution to accept community college students for two years of additional study to complete their bachelor’s degrees. As of fall 2017, there are 15 CyberCorps SFS universities partnering with 19 community colleges.
The awards come in advance of the annual job fair held for CyberCorps SFS scholarship recipients each January in the Washington, D.C. area.
1- The WannaCry ransomware attack was a May 2017 worldwide cyberattack by the WannaCry ransomware cryptoworm, which targeted computers running the Microsoft Windows operating system by encrypting data and demanding ransom payments in the Bitcoin cryptocurrency. It propagated through EternalBlue, an exploit in older Windows systems released by The Shadow Brokers a few months prior to the attack.