CSC News

October 18, 2013

Studies Show Software Security Students, Professionals Unprepared

Drs. Laurie Williams, professor of computer science, and Emerson Murphy-Hill, assistant professor of computer science, and Kevin Oliver, associate professor of instructional technology at NC State University, have been awarded $300,000 by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to support their research proposal entitled “Motivating and Reaching Students and Professionals with Software Security Education.”
The award will run from September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2015. 
Abstract –According to a 2010 report that was based on the interviews from 2,800 Information Technology professionals worldwide, the gap between hacker threats and suitable security defenses is widening, and the types and numbers of threats are changing faster than ever before. In 2010, Jim Gosler, a fellow at the Sandia National Laboratory who works on countering attacks on U.S. networks, claimed that there are approximately 1,000 people in the country with the skills needed for cyber defense. Gosler went on to say that 20 to 30 times that many are needed. Additionally, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Mykonos Software security firm indicated that today's graduates in software engineering are unprepared to enter the workforce because they lack a solid understanding of how to make their applications secure. Particularly due to this shortage of security expertise, education of students and professionals already in the workforce is paramount. In this grant we provide a plan for motivating and providing software security education to students and professionals by providing classroom resources and by teaching through an online management system provided via DigitalChalk, and through a massive open online course (MOOC).
For more information on Dr. Williams, click here.
For more information on Dr. Murphy-Hill, click here.
For more information on Dr. Oliver, click here.


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