Seidenberg Team Fends Off Cyber Attackers at Regional Competition

While many students were packing their bags to leave for spring break, nine committed Seidenberg students were gathering their notes and textbooks and preparing to leave for the 2012 Northeast  Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (NECCDC), a regional event that is one of the most popular and highly-regarded cyber competitions.


For nearly 20 hours over a period of three days, the Seidenberg team participated in the demanding competition organized by Northeastern University and hosted by EMC.  The event took place outside of Boston in early March.

During the three days of competition time, the Seidenberg team simulated a group of new employees brought in to secure, manage, and maintain the small business network of World Wide Financial, a fictitious company.  The students had to respond to routine business tasks while defending against a live Red Team that attacked their systems. In addition they also had to maintain a core group of critical services (email server, e-commerce site, etc.). This was hardly an easy exercise, but the students found it to be a unique learning experience.

Participating cyberwarriors included:  Ariana Abramson (CS/Freshman/PLV), Christopher Carvalho (IT/Junior/PLV), Marc Kowtko (IT/Sophomore/PLV) , Marcus Hernandez (IT/Senior/PLV), Allison Llewelyn (CS/Junior/PLV), Patrick Prescott (IT/Freshman/PLV), Max Wagner (CS/Senior/PLV), David Wallach (IS/Freshman/PLV), Christopher White (IT/Junior/PLV).

In addition to the cybersecurity exercise, the students had the opportunity to network with cybersecurity practitioners from companies like EMC, RSA (the security division of EMC), the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the United States Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) as well as with students and faculty from participating institutions.

Participating institutions included: Alfred State College, Champlain College, Harvard, Northeastern, Pace, Rochester Institute of Technology, Stevens Institute of Technology, University of Buffalo, University of Maine, UMass Boston, University of New Hampshire, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

Pace’s participation in the 2012 NECCDC was made possible with support from a Verizon Foundation Thinkfinity grant. The Pace team was recruited and trained by Andreea Cotoranu, director of assessment and associate director of the Seidenberg CyberSecurity Institute, and Tom Reivik, Network/Systems Analyst in the Seidenberg School.