YSU cyber defense team fends off red menace

Members of YSU's cyber defense team placed second in state for the 2012 Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition.

Left to right are: Steve Mesik, Johnathan Eddy, Michael Caldwell, Nathan Miller, Chris Lozano, Michael Chuey, Jacob Swank, and Mike Harris.

Youngstown State University’s cyber defense team brought home a second place finish in the state qualifier for the 2012 Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition. The competition is open to all two and four-year colleges and universities.

Members of the team are: Nathan Miller, captain, East Palestine, Ohio, Masters in Computing and Information Systems; Chris Lozano, Petersburg, Ohio, Information Technology; Jacob Swank, Hubbard, Ohio, Information Technology; Jonathan Eddy, Canfield, Ohio, Computer Information Systems; Michael Caldwell, Champion, Ohio, Computer Information Systems; Michael Chuey, North Lima, Ohio, Information Technology; Michael Harris, Niles Ohio, Computer Information Systems; and Stephen Mesik of Austintown, Ohio, Computer Information Systems.

The competition tests each team’s ability to operate, secure, manage, and maintain a corporate network, and is the first to create a realistic corporate administration and security experience.

Student teams assume administrative and protective duties for a commercial network – typically one with 50+ users, seven to 10 servers, and common Internet services such as a web server, mail server, and e-commerce site.

Teams begin the competition with identical hardware and software and are scored on their ability to detect and respond to outside threats, maintain availability of existing services, respond to business requests, and balance security needs against business needs.

An automated scoring engine verifies the functionality and availability of each team’s services on a periodic basis and traffic generators continuously feed simulated user-traffic into the competition network. A volunteer “red” team, consisting of security professionals charged with breaching team’s defenses, provides an external threat allowing teams to match their defensive skills against live opponents.

Published Spring 2012