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‘Cyber 4 All’ welcomes all students to gain cyber defense skills

Students working on whiteboard while holding laptop
Taylor Lippman Photo

A recent study by Cybersecurity Ventures, a respected publisher of cybersecurity content, predicted that 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs around the world will be unfilled by 2021. In a technology driven world that is expanding more rapidly than society and policy can react, it is imperative that all students have the opportunity to gain fundamental cyber defense skills.

To remedy this, starting in August 2020, any student regardless of their degree program or major may pursue a certificate in Cyber-Physical Systems Security-for-All (or Cyber 4 All). These courses provide a cyber security background for everyone. The objective is to raise the cybersecurity awareness across the campus.

Professor holding microchip
Sin Ming Loo, Photo by Allison Corona

This 12 credit certificate is being offered through Boise State’s College of Engineering, and was championed by electrical and computer engineering professor Sin Ming Loo, with input from: Doug Twitchell of Information Technology and Supply Chain Management; mathematics professor Liljana Babinkostova and professor Marion Scheepers; associate dean of Extended Studies Peter Risse; associate professor of community and environmental health Jaime Sand; chair or computer science Amit Jain; professor of educational technology Brett Shelton; and Jim Browning of electrical and computer engineering.

The certificate is related to the new online Cyber Operations certificate program that also will launch in the fall semester with support from industry partners including Simplot, Idaho National Laboratory and Idaho Air National Guard. Additional technical design inputs were provided by Albertsons, Idaho Power and the Boise Chapter of Information Systems Security Association members.

“Whether you call it cybersecurity, cyber-physical systems security, information assurance, information security or computer security, it really doesn’t matter,” explained Loo. “If you use electronic devices in any part of your life, you are being impacted by the ‘Internet of Things.’”

The Cyber 4 All certificate will include the following courses:

  • Cyber and physical security awareness for all
  • Internet of things: connected devices
  • Hands-on security: from home to office and everything in between
  • Incident response and recovery

“As the number and type of electronic devices continues to grow, the need for cyber education is becoming critical for all of us,” said Loo. “Everyone needs to know how to stay safe in a world increasingly driven and controlled by technology. To keep us all safe in our increasingly connected world, we need problem solvers with different perspectives, approaches, ways of thinking and methods.”

For more information, please visit: https://www.boisestate.edu/coen-cps2/