NYU-Poly’s 6th Annual Cyber Security Challenges to Draw Hundreds of Student Finalists, Corporate Security Chiefs and Cyber Celebrities to Campus This Friday, Nov. 13


NYU-Poly’s 6th Annual Cyber Security Challenges to Draw Hundreds of Student Finalists, Corporate Security Chiefs and Cyber Celebrities to Campus This Friday, Nov. 13

NEW YORK, November 13, 2009 - With the clock ticking toward Friday, Nov. 13, the country’s top computer students are preparing to descend upon the Brooklyn campus of Polytechnic Institute of New York University to compete in cyber security challenges awarding cash and scholarships to the winners.

A record number of students from the United States and Europe participated in the 6th Annual Cyber Security Awareness Week (CSAW) Challenges leading up to the finals at NYU-Poly, home to a leading cyber security academic program. More than 100 of the best high school, undergraduate and graduate cyber-security and digital forensics students will travel from as far as Hawaii and Utah to challenge their peers in the final rounds.

The professionals will nearly match the number of students, as cyber security chiefs of corporations, branches of the military and government agencies seek to woo the next generation of digital geniuses who will protect digital networks and fight cyber crime. Celebrity “white hat” hackers who guard networks helped design the digital games, and many will serve as judges.

Keynote speaker for the awards ceremony that follows the games will be General Electric’s chief information security officer, Grady Summers. Summers is known for embracing emerging technology and has pioneered the use of cloud storage and security as a service to decrease GE’s information risk.

The games are run by the graduate students of NYU-Poly’s Information Systems and Internet Security Lab, funded by the National Science Foundation and headed by Professor Nasir Memon, a prominent cyber-security expert. When the games were founded, the preliminary rounds spanned a week. Six years later, the preliminary rounds span nearly all of October, which is National Cyber Security Month.

“The growth in the NYU-Poly CSAW games parallels the urgency of the issue of cyber security,” Memon said. “Security consultants SANS estimate that the United States has only 1,000 world-class, technical cyber security professionals today, and that we will need 20,000 to 30,000 within just a few years to protect our networks.”

Memon continued: “Meanwhile, police forensics departments tell us that virtually every crime has some digital element and that their digital forensics labs sometimes have years-long backlogs. Schools like NYU-Poly need to find and educate students like these, who are capable of designing software that can cut the backlog and become cyber-investigators themselves.”

Although high school students have participated - and even won - challenges in past years, this year marks the first in which a special forensics challenge was developed for high school teams. More than 80 teams competed in the first round. Nine high school teams will be among the finalists competing at NYU-Poly. Other final rounds will be the Capture the Flag Application Security; the Embedded Systems Challenge, in which students must defend their chips against malicious modification during manufacturing; the Research Awards; the Quiz Tournament, and the Security Awareness Poster Competition. The full list of finalists can be viewed at http://www.poly.edu/csaw. Top prizes include graduate-level scholarships to NYU-Poly, recognized as one of the leading digital security schools in the world.

Memon thanked CSAW sponsors that provide the travel funds and prizes to make the student-run competition possible. Sponsors are Assured Information Security, AT&T, BAE Systems, the Center for Advanced Technology in Telecommunications at NYU-Poly, Cisco, InterDigital, L-3 Communications, NIKSUN and SANS.

About Polytechnic Institute of New York University
Polytechnic Institute of New York University (formerly Polytechnic University), an affiliate of New York University, is New York’s most comprehensive school of engineering, applied sciences, technology and research, and is rooted in Polytechnic’s 155-year tradition of invention, innovation and entrepreneurship - i2e. The institution, founded in 1854, is one of the nation’s oldest private engineering schools. In addition to its main campus at MetroTech Center in downtown Brooklyn, it offers programs at sites throughout the region and around the globe. NYU-Poly has centers in Long Island, Manhattan and Westchester County; globally, it has programs in Israel, China and will be an integral part of NYU’s campus in Abu Dhabi opening in autumn 2010. For more information, visit www.poly.edu.

Press Contact

John Beckman
John Beckman
(212) 998-6848