UNI Teams Win ISU Cyber-Defense Competition

Cyber Defense TeamA team of University of Northern Iowa computer science students brought home first- and second-place wins at the fifth annual Cyber Defense Competition at Iowa State University earlier this month.

UNI Team One, the first place winners, included Dan Cash, Danny Lockard and Nick Cash of Cedar Falls, and Dan Boeding of Princeton.

UNI Team Six, the second place winners, included Nate Kemmer of Dike; Andrew Blinkmann of Mason City; Leandro Avila of Bogota, Colombia; Samantha Fahrmann of Estherville; Mohammed Al Baharnah of Alqatif, Saudi Arabia; and J.C. Last of Grand Junction.

Paul Gray, UNI associate professor of computer science advised both teams.

The Cyber Defense Competition challenges teams to maintain and secure a large collection of prescribed computer services while being subjected to various attacks and threats by security professionals, according to Gray. For three weeks prior to the competition, the teams set up their services, and during the competition they defended their networks against the "Red Team," made up of security professionals from various industries and academic institutions. Teams were required to support services for e-mail, Web, Jabber, an instant-messaging system, shell accounts and file transfers.

"This year more than in the past, students stepped up and took on things that they'd never done before," Gray said. "Everyone will be talking about this year's event for quite a while."

The event was organized through the Information Assurance Student Group Association and the Information Assurance Center at ISU.

Photo: L-R: Dan Cash, Dan Boeding, and (stocking cap) Dan Lockard