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CyberDawgs fetch national title

University of Maryland Baltimore County captures NCCDC championship

The University of Maryland-Baltimore County "CyberDawgs" discuss strategy during the NCCDC championships in San Antonio, Texas.

The “CyberDawgs” from the University of Maryland Baltimore County defeated nine other finalist teams to become champions of the 2017 National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition. The national championship was held in San Antonio, Texas, on April 13-15, with the top 10 college and university teams from across the nation facing off to protect a network against constant cyber attacks.

More than 230 colleges and universities participated in the regional competitions that led to the 2017 national championship.

"The competition itself is diving into the day in a life of being a cybersecurity specialist," said Jeff Jacoby, director of cybersecurity and special missions at competition presenting sponsor Raytheon, "and they are working on real-world scenarios that they need to maintain business continuity."

Founded in 2005, NCCDC is the first national cybersecurity competition to test how well college students operate and manage a network infrastructure similar to what those in the commercial sector. In this year’s national championship, teams worked to secure a virtual, multi-site, retail corporation with 160 employees, point-of-sale systems, inventory controls and other systems found in a typical retail company.

The teams needed to work together to secure and maintain the computer network, and to handle daily business operations like service calls, user requests or management tasks, all while being hit with various attacks from a red team.

“Watching these students practice their skills in real-life business scenarios gives me confidence we are growing the workforce-ready cyber talent that will meet the future demands of this important field,” said Dave Wajsgras, president of Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services. “Congratulations to the University of Maryland-Baltimore County for a job well done.”

At the end of the competition, University of Maryland-Baltimore County earned the highest score and took home the coveted NCCDC Alamo Cup. Raytheon will bring the winning team to Washington, D.C., this summer to tour some of the nation’s top research and national cybersecurity sites.

In addition to University of Maryland, Baltimore County top finish, University of Tulsa placed second and Brigham Young University placed third. The 10 schools that competed at the championship include:

•University of Alaska Fairbanks, At Large Regional CCDC Winner
•University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Mid-Atlantic Regional Winner
•DePaul University, Mid-West Regional Winner
•Montana Tech, North Central Regional Winner
•Rochester Institute of Technology, Northeast Regional Winner
•University of Washington Seattle, Pacific Rim Regional Winner
•Brigham Young University, Rocky Mountain Regional Winner
•University of South Alabama, Southeast Regional Winner
•University of Tulsa, Southwest Regional Winner
•California State University Northridge, Western Regional CCDC Winner

“The NCCDC program brings academia, government and industry together in a unique way,” said Dwayne Williams, NCCDC director. “Everyone recognizes we need to find and train more cyber professionals and these competitions absolutely help to meet that need.”

The University of Maryland-Baltimore County team hoist up the NCCDC championship trophy after beating the competition in San Antonio, Texas.

Published: 04/17/2017

Last Updated: 04/17/2017

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