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ISC2 funds IT security research

ISC Squared : 16 August, 2007  (Company News)
ISC-Squared provides funds for post-graduate research programmes into information security.
ISC2 or ISC-squared has announced the recipients of the 2007 (ISC)2 Information Security Scholarship Program, which awards US$100,000 annually in financial assistance to post-graduate students around the world who are conducting information security research projects.

The eight winners of the 2007 program will each receive a US$12,500 (Euro 9079.45; £6166.11) scholarship to fund research in a variety of information security areas, including access control; policy; network threat detection, analysis and mitigation; risk analysis; and cryptography. Winning recipients were selected by the (ISC)2 Scholarship Committee based on the relevance of the students' research, (ISC)2 professional designation and financial need.

"The quality and diversity of this year's recipients reflect the high caliber of individuals around the world who are moving information security forward," said Ed Zeitler, CISSP, executive director of (ISC)2. "We are all fortunate to have such outstanding, dedicated people conducting such groundbreaking research for the protection of society. (ISC)2 is honored to present the 2007 scholarships to these extraordinary students."

"Without this scholarship program, I wouldn't have been able to start the PhD that I have now been working on for a year. It would have been difficult to obtain funding to study abroad, and it is only outside of my country, Portugal, where I could find experts on the area I wanted to research," says Ana Ferreira.

Examining access control in healthcare, Ms Ferreira aims to comprehensively reflect end users' needs, opinions and attitudes as they are demonstrated in a real healthcare environment. Her work is to encompass input from focus groups and observational studies from a range of healthcare professionals and facilities.

Julian Rrushi, seeking his PhD from the University of Milan, is participating in a research exchange program, with his research hosted at the University of Illinois. His project examines the process of analysis and mitigation of vulnerabilities in critical infrastructure control system code. The aim is to devise and implement novel approaches to the security analysis of real-time control systems and thereby improve vulnerability detection capabilities and response to vulnerability exploitation.

"This funding provides considerable support, allowing me to access existing literature and software and attend conferences so that I can move the body of knowledge in this area forward," says Rrushi. "There is considerable space to be explored in the area of cyber security of critical infrastructures. It is very good to see that (ISC)2 takes a strong interest in cyber security research."

Launched in 2003, the (ISC)2 Information Security Scholarship Program was created to recognise pioneering information security research being conducted at universities worldwide as part of an ongoing commitment to promote the profession through education and research. To apply, students are required to submit a scholarship application form, undergraduate and graduate transcripts, three character references and a proposed budget for using the scholarship funds. All scholarship funds will be paid directly to the recipient's university.

In addition to its annual scholarship program, (ISC)2 conducts other initiatives to assist those either considering a career in information security or just getting started in the industry. These include the Associate of (ISC)2 program, which allows students and others who don't have enough work experience to become fully certified to take (ISC)2 certification exams and gain access to member resources and benefits if they pass and commit to the (ISC)2 Code of Ethics. (ISC)2 also publishes a printed and online career guide for academic counsellors and those considering entering the field. Titled "Decoding the Information Security Profession," with US and European editions, the guide offers insights into what a career in the field might be like and includes resources on how to pursue one.

Zeitler concluded, "It's critical that new entrants into the information security profession start their careers on the right path. Through this scholarship program and our other offerings, we are committed to helping them get there."
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