AACC’s cyber team earns place in regional cyber defense competition


Anne Arundel Community College out-performed at least 20 other teams to earn a place in the 2013 National CyberWatch Center Mid-Atlantic Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC) Finals.

The 12-member team includes Colby T. Baxter of Church Hill, Jesse A. Brogan of Edgewater, Brian E. Compher of Baltimore, Mark Covington Sr. of Annapolis, Robert Davis of Severna Park, Daniel S. Herington of Odenton, Marcelle Lee of Severna Park, Rafael Mation of Baltimore, Derrik M. Oates of Silver Spring, Dustin B. Shirley of Odenton, Sameer Singal of Severna Park and Chris S. Woolwine of Pasadena.

The AACC team’s preparations for the regional competition can be followed on Twitter at #AACCBlueTeam.

The opportunity to participate in cyber defense competitions is part of AACC’s cybersecurity programs. The college offers an Information Assurance and Cybersecurity Associate of Applied Science degree with a Cyber Forensics option. AACC has been designated one of eight National Centers of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence (CDFAE) by the U.S. Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center and has been designated as a Center for Academic Excellence in Information Assurance 2-Year education by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security due to the rigor of its courses.

Eight teams will compete at the regional level April 12-13 at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab in Laurel. In addition to AACC, the institutions in the regional round include Maryland colleges: Capitol College, University of Maryland College Park and University of Maryland University College; North Carolina colleges: Craven Community College and North Carolina State University; Millersville University of Pennsylvania; and Radford University of Virginia.

The CCDC is designed to give students the chance to apply classroom theory and skills to defend against real-time targeted cyberattacks, led by professional security testers (the “red team”), in a controlled, scored setting. Each competition revolves around a compelling, simulated scenario – based on real-world systems such as power grids and health care data networks – that represents the effects of various cyberattacks. This year’s event tasks the college teams with defending simulated electronic voting systems for a fictitious nation that has never before held an election.

Events in addition to the competition include a daylong symposium on April 10, featuring four national experts on cybersecurity and electronic voting: Dr. J. Alex Halderman (University of Michigan), Dr. Avi D. Rubin (Johns Hopkins University), Dr. Alan T. Sherman (University of Maryland Baltimore County) and Dr. Dan Wallach (Rice University); a job fair on April 11 for students at schools within the National CyberWatch Center network, featuring dozens of recruiters from private industry and the government; and the High School Cybersecurity Fair and Expo on April 13.

The Mid-Atlantic CCDC is one of 10 regional competitions, all part of the Deloitte National CCDC. Twenty eight teams competed in the virtual qualifying round March 19-20, including several four-year universities. The winning team will move on to the National CCDC on April 19-21 in San Antonio.

In addition to its cyber programs, other computer technologies offerings at AACC include Associate of Applied Science degrees in Computer Network Management and three options under a Computer Information Systems degree. AACC also offers an Associate of Science Transfer degree in Computer Science with five degree options, including game and simulation programming and development of applications for both Internet and mobile devices.

For information about the team, contact their faculty advisers Carrie S. Leary and Tim Kroeger. For information about AACC’s cybersecurity and other computer technologies programs, contact Kasia Taylor, coordinator of AACC’s networking, security and forensics programs, at 410-777-7096.

About Anne Arundel Community College
Anne Arundel Community College is an award-winning, fully accredited public two-year institution serving approximately 53,000 students each year through classes offered at more than 100 sites in Anne Arundel County or online. Having just celebrated its 50th anniversary, AACC offers national and regional award-winning studies leading to a degree, certificate, industry credential, transfer to a four-year institution or career enhancement, personal enrichment and lifelong learning.

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