National security agencies honor UAB cyber security programs

NSA, Homeland Security designate UAB a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research

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The designation provides the CIA|JFR a security education academic liaison who will promote collaboration between the government and UAB and work to identify outstanding students for future government employment.


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The University of Alabama at Birmingham Center for Information Assurance and Joint Forensics Research has been designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency. The designation entitles the CIA|JFR program to apply for scholarships and grants through the federal Information Assurance Scholarship Programs.

cybersecurity_award_story“We are very excited about this federal recognition of the center’s leading-edge research and training of tomorrow’s cyber-investigators,” UAB President Carol Garrison says. “This is further affirmation of UAB’s leadership role as a national and international nexus for cyber-security.”

The CAE-R designation was developed in 2007 to encourage universities and students to pursue research, development and innovation in information assurance and cyber-security. The stated goal is “to increase our understanding of robust IA technology, policy and practices that will enable our nation to effectively prevent or respond to a catastrophic cyber-event.”

“We are honored that the DHS and NSA recognize the outstanding programs, resources, faculty and students we have at UAB,” says Anthony Skjellum, Ph.D., chair of UAB Computer and Information Sciences and founding director of the CIA|JFR. “We look forward to collaborating with both organizations to identify sources for research and development in our effort to uphold the integrity and security of this country.”

The designation also provides the CIA|JFR a security education academic liaison who will promote collaboration between the government and UAB and work to identify outstanding students for future government employment.

The designation is for five years and was awarded in a ceremony at the National Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education June 11, 2012.

The mission of the CIA|JFR, the culmination of a 2006 partnership between UAB’s Computer and Information Sciences and Justice Sciences, is to combat crimes through interdisciplinary research and development in computer, accounting and life sciences. The center is home to the UAB Computer Forensics Research Laboratory, a 35-station lab that focuses on developing investigative tools and techniques for analyzing digital evidence that offers law enforcement solutions in many areas including spam data-mining, phishing, computer security, computer intrusion and identity theft. Partners of the CIA|JFR include the Alabama Department of Forensic Science, Alabama Bureau of Investigation, United States Secret Service, Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Department of Treasury.

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