U.S. Cyber Challenge and Commonwealth of Virginia to Host Cyber Security Executive Roundtable

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Education and Technology Experts Will Convene August 2 to Focus on Solutions to Cyber Workforce Shortage

Jim Duffey, Virginia Secretary of Technology and Karen Evans, National Director of the U.S. Cyber Challenge will host a roundtable discussion featuring national experts from government, industry and academia on August 2 at the J.Sargeant Reynolds Community College in Richmond, Virginia. The event, “The Manpower Crisis in Cyber Security: Promising Solutions,” taking place at 12:00 pm, will examine the critical gap in the cyber security workforce and identify opportunities for closing that gap through creative partnerships and increased focus on education. More than 80 individuals, who are participating in the 2011 Virginia Regional Cyber Security Boot Camp at the college, will be attending the roundtable.

The Executive Roundtable will include the following experts:

  •     Dr. Ernest McDuffie, Lead for the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE), National Institute of Standards and Technology
  •     Mike Watson, Senior Manager of IT Risk Management, Commonwealth Security and Risk Management at the Virginia Information Technology Agency (VITA)
  •     Charles Croom, Lt. General (retired), Vice President, Cyber Solutions, Lockheed Martin, Former Director, Defense Information Systems Agency
  •     Sounil Yu, Senior Associate, Booz Allen Hamilton
  •     David Tobey, Director of Research, National Board of Information Security Examiners (NBISE)
  •     Kristopher Cox, Information Security Officer at J.Sargeant Reynolds Community College
  •     Christopher Fountain, Chief Executive Officer, SecureInfo
  •     John Rothenberger, Chief Executive Officer, SE Solutions
  •     Dorsey Morrow, General Counsel, ISC2

Less than ten percent of the estimated 30,000 skilled security professionals needed are in the workplace – it is clear that addressing the gap has never been greater. Through candid discussion and interaction with the audience, the roundtable will assess where skills are most needed, by whom and how best to teach them. Questions to be examined will include: Should a minimum set of qualifications of technical skills be taught and tested in cyber security programs? Should colleges be incentivized to transform their programming courses to make security an integral part of the teaching and grading? The roundtable will provide follow-up to the Human Capital Crisis in Cyber Security report, issued by the Center for Strategic and International Studies last fall, to assess what has been accomplished and what needs to be done. The roundtable participants will gain an understanding of the dimensions of the workforce shortage -- and see how critical their technical skills are to the solution. They will also learn about opportunities available to them through the U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC) and its partners.

The Executive Roundtable is held in conjunction with the 2011 Virginia Regional Cyber Security Boot Camp, taking place at the college August 1-August 5. The camp is one of five weeklong “boot camps” being held across the country this summer and coordinated by USCC, a national coalition focused on identifying and developing cyber security talent to fill the nation’s workforce shortage. The Cyber Camp provides attendees with intensive workshops on a range of topics, including penetration testing, reverse engineering, and forensics, taught by college faculty, SANS Institute senior instructors and other cyber security experts. The Cyber Camp week will be capped off by a virtual “capture the flag” competition and awards ceremony on Friday, August 5 at the college. The awards ceremony will include remarks from Commonwealth Secretary of Technology Jim Duffey; John Ambrose, Vice President of Technology, J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College; Alan Paller, Director of Research at SANS Institute; and Kristopher Cox. U.S. Senator Mark Warner is participating via videotaped message. Dorsey Morrow will present $1,000 scholarships to the winning capture-the-flag team members. The full list of Cyber Camp sponsors is available on the USCC website.

Attendees to the invitation-only camps were selected based in part on their scores from Cyber Quests, an online competition offered through USCC in April that drew more than 800 participants from approximately 400 schools nationwide. Cyber Camp invitations were also extended to individuals who demonstrated proficiency in other U.S. Cyber Challenge competitions, such as the Cyber Foundations, CyberPatriot, NetWars, and the DC3 Digital Forensics Challenge.

The 2011 Cyber Camps are part of several initiatives underway through USCC. For more information about the Cyber Camp program and other initiatives visit USCC online.

About U.S. Cyber Challenge:
The mission of the U.S. Cyber Challenge (USCC), a division of the Center for Internet Security, is to significantly reduce the shortage in the cyber workforce by serving as the premier program to identify, recruit and place the next generation of cyber security professionals. USCC's goal is to find 10,000 of America's best and brightest to fill the ranks of cyber security professionals where their skills can be of the greatest value to the nation.

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