Cyber Defense contest challenges six college teams to keep computers secure

Kennesaw State University hosted and placed third among six teams in the 2008 Southeast Collegiate…

Georgia (Mar 6, 2008) — Cyber Defense contest challenges six college teams to keep computers secure

Aixa Pascual


Contact: Director of University Relations
Frances Weyand Harrison

Contact: Aixa M. Pascual‚ 678−797−2549 or

Cyber Defense Contest Challenges Six College Teams to Keep Computers Secure
KSU team places third

KENNESAW‚ Ga. (March 6‚ 2008) — Kennesaw State University hosted and placed third among six teams in the 2008 Southeast Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition last weekend.

The University of Louisville won first place and the University of North Carolina at Charlotte finished second in the competition‚ where five−to−eight−member teams competed to maintain a computer network and defend it from hackers in what has been dubbed “The Geeks’ World Series.”

For 18 hours‚ teams competed to maintain — and keep secure — a computer network whose systems were malevolently attacked. Experts from Internet Security Systems and PricewaterhouseCoopers attacked and harassed the student teams and their fragile networks. The teams‚ in turn‚ had to defend their information.

The simulation had everyday challenges faced by a small Internet service provider‚ from keeping up with Web servers and maintaining e−mail networks to adding firewalls. Teams were scored on their ability to detect and respond to outside threats‚ maintain existing services while responding to business requests — all the while balancing data protection and security needs against business needs.

More than just a showcase for cyber−security technical skills‚ the competition took expertise in project management and multitasking. For KSU senior Drew Sutton‚ it required “being able to stay cool under pressure‚” he said.

The competition is an excellent teaching tool‚ said professor Michael Whitman‚ director of KSU’s Center for Information Security Education and event coordinator. “It provides a very real−world focus for our information security majors‚ allowing them to compete in a hands−on‚ realistic experience.”

Other participant teams included: Southern Polytechnic State University; the University of Alabama−Birmingham and Mercer University. The University of Louisville team will go on to the National Collegiate CyberDefense Competition to be held in San Antonio‚ Texas‚ April 18−20.

For more information‚ contact Aixa M. Pascual at 678−797−2549 or


A member of the 35−unit University System of Georgia‚ Kennesaw State University is a comprehensive‚ residential institution with a growing student population of more than 20‚000 from 132 countries. The third−largest university in Georgia‚ Kennesaw State offers more than 60 graduate and undergraduate degrees‚ including a new doctorate in education.


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit