Seidenberg hosts cybersecurity programs for high school teachers and students

20160722_140351Recently, the Seidenberg School welcomed teachers and high school students from 10 states for free training as part of an NSA grant to promote K-12 cybersecurity education.

The programs invited participants to visit Pace University’s Pleasantville campus for a week of cybersecurity education training. 25 high school teachers attended the first session, and 30 high school students the second. Since there’s plenty to cover, this post is all about the GenCyber teachers’ workshop and you’ll just have to wait for the next post to hear about Camp Cyberbot!

“The GenCyber summer programs aim to train the next generation of cybersecurity professionals by preparing our educators and by getting young students interested in the cybersecurity area, which is one of strengths of the Seidenberg School at Pace University,” said Professor Li-Chiou Chen, the principal investigator of the project.

One of the attendees, Nathan VanDyke, a high school math and computer science teacher from Minnesota, said: “This is really a whole new world for us. Cybersecurity will be a major area of study and we need to prepare our students for this field.’’

20160722_141234VanDyke was one of 25 high school teachers from 10 states who were at Pace University from July 14-22 to attend a program at the Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. The school is the only one in the tri-state area (New York, New Jersey and Connecticut) to host the teachers’ cybercamp as a part of the national GenCyber program funded by the National Security Agency to promote cybersecurity education at the K-to-12 level.

Teachers were introduced to Raspberry Pi, a tiny, inexpensive computer that makes it easier to teach computing concepts, such as encryption and programming in the classroom. 

After the GenCyber workshop’s conclusion, participants were awarded with certificates of completion.

Next post, we’re talking about the second session, Camp Cyberbot, which saw high school students building underwater SeaPerch robots and testing them in the PLV campus pond!

Seidenberg Alum’s Kickstarter Campaign

Marcelo Zimmler
Seidenberg Alum, Marcelo Zimmler
Seidenberg alum, Marcelo Zimmler (Class of 2012), has just launched a kickstarted campaign of his own. After graduation, Zimmler moved to London to pursue an MBA, but over the years, he has been developing his own business he calls Mariscotti Art, and it is based out of NYC. The publishing company deals with original artwork and reproductions by Contemporary Abstract artist Osvaldo Mariscotti. The Kickstarter Zimmler has just launched is campaigning to create an entire collection of unique fashion accessories inspired by Mariscotti’s art. The accessories include (so far) scarves and shawls made of pure silk, cashmere, and Merino wool.

“I thought that by presenting the art in more familiar and accessible formats, people would be able to gain insights and greater appreciation for this particular kind of art which is very valuable but sometimes misunderstood.”

To take a look at the Mariscotti Art project, or to back the fund, you can get to the Kickstarter page here!
The artist Mariscotti and some of his work.
The artist Mariscotti and some of his work.

Pace University’s STEM Collaboratory Camp 2014

pace-university-stem-campLast month twenty high school students from across the five boroughs embarked on a summer STEM adventure as part of Pace University’s STEM Collaboratory Camp, a collaboration of Pace and AT&T. For two weeks they learned and experimented with coding, robotics, Cybersecurity, Design Thinking and scientific research processes, among other skills. Then, they began to put their skills to work.

STEM Camp 2014_Seidenberg
On August 1st, 2014 the camp culminated with students formally presenting their very own Cybersecurity mobile apps. 

Special guests included Elizabeth Segal from AT&T, Kelli Kedis Ogborn from DARPA Legislative Affairs – Spire Communications, and Brook Gesser from U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s Office.

Members of the media were invited to attend the graduation reception.

To view the work done by each team, simply click on the links below.

Team Cybot comprising of Jacob Sadeh, Lary Toyter, Maryia Spirydonava, and Mariah Torcivia presented their app,  Cyber Triv — an app that raises awareness about Cybersecurity.

Team Cybot | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg

Team FoCS (aka FOX), comprising of Nicholas Austin, Sole Stewart, Loreen Chan, and Christopher Boyce, created WE-FE — an app that allows you to monitor who’s on your Wi-Fi and take appropriate action. 

Team FoCS | STEM Camp| Seidenberg 

Team Rocket, comprising of Kemar Dudley, David Lebron, Summer Carrio, and Dishan Win, created the app Secure-IT — an app that shows you just how secure you are online.

Team Rocket | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg

Team Phisher comprising of Iya Hawkins, Anthony Agbofoati, Anastasiya Malinouskaya, Jeremy End invented Phisher — an app that allows you find all your old posts … and have a good long think!

Team Phisher | STEM Camp '14 | Seidenberg


For more pictures and videos from STEM Camp, follow us on Facebook.

Suhail Bhandari 

5 Things Grad Students Need To Keep In Mind For Fall 2014

Vaibhav_Seidenberg

Hi, my name is Vaibhav Dubey. I’m a second-semester graduate student at theSeidenberg School of CSIS, specializing in Information Systems. With a little bit of perseverance – and some great guidance by the faculty here – over the last semester I have worked as a student consultant for the Pace Computer Resource Center, a proctor at the Student Advising Center, and most recently, as a Student Assistant for the Seidenberg School’s social media team.

Of late, I have been getting a lot of questions, via Facebook, from incoming international graduate students inquiring about their experience ahead. These inquiries include and revolve around which specialization/major is the best, which subjects to take, where to stay, which scholarships are available, visa requirements, and the most urgent question – “Will I get a job soon?”  In attempts to relieve some stress I thought this would be this best way to reach out to everyone – with the top 5 things you need to keep in mind once you have arrived.

1. Picking the right program for you: A few months ago, I was just as overwhelmed as you probably are right now! But the surprising news is – it really doesn’t matter which subjects you start out with! One of the nice things about the Seidenberg School is that you can take any combination of IT/CS /IS subjects you want. Even if you get a little confused along the way, you’ve got some really helpful academic advisers waiting to help: Kimberly Brazaitis (kbrazaitis@pace.edu) and Stephanie (selson@pace.edu.) Thanks to their help and guidance I was able to take a few introductory classes last semester and was able to figure out what I was interested in, but more importantly, what I was good at!

2. Getting a job: According to the law the United States, international students are not legally allowed to work off-campus until they complete two full semesters of study (Fall & Spring). But you can start working on-campus from the day you arrive! Bookmark Pace University’s eRecruiting Site and check it frequently. I found all three of my on campus jobs there. Note: To set up your eRecruiting account just call your local Career Services office (New York City: 212-346-1950/ Pleasantville & White Plains: (914-773-3361). As for getting a full-time job after you graduate – well, with a Pace Seidenberg degree, you are sure likely to stand out in the IT industry.

3. Keep on your speed dial: The Office of Student Assistance (OSA) and the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO) are where you go for any and all you paperwork. Visa stamping, ID’s, official letters, social security forms, health insurance, tuition bills – EVERYTHING! Do not worry if you cannot find them, they will come to you. Expect at least 2 emails every day.

4. Scholarships: The Seidenberg School offers only merit-based scholarships to international students, and they are granted at the time of admission itself. What you should look out for is Graduate Assistantships (GA). A full G.A. can result in up to $12,000 worth of tuition!

5. Get socially involved on campus: Here at Pace University there are many opportunities to get involved and get connected with others. The Pace Indian Students Association, for example, is all about networking! PISA is a professional group of Indian students studying at Pace University. As an international student, I believe it is one of the best ways to make friends, interact with alumni, get leads on internships and find the only other people on campus willing to play cricket!

I hope this helps. In case you have any other questions, please feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll try to answer them.

See you all in September!

– Vaibhav Dubey

 

Are You Protecting Your Bank and Your Customers?

For the average banking customer, little attention is paid to the security aspect of public wireless networks at banks. Today’s users are so accustomed to attaching to free, public Wi-Fi services that they inherently trust that financial institutions are protecting their data and confidential information.

Prof_Gabberty_Seidenberg

However, that is not always true. Often times, financial institutions do not regularly monitor and update their routers which put their wireless networks at risk. As routers are the devices that handle network connectivity, they are susceptible to many of the same anomalies as tablets and personal computers, such as performing sluggishly, occasionally locking up, and much worse, becoming infected with malware. Just like their computer counterparts, routers are usually shipped with an operating system that has been installed by the manufacturer which needs to be occasionally refreshed with an updated version, begging the questions: “how often do banks actually perform this upgrade?” The answer, simply put, is that while some do, others don’t. Why is this so?

Professor James W. Gabberty

One of the primary reasons that financial institutions are loathe to update their routers’ operating systems has to do with the sheer number of routers deployed by mid- and large-sized banks and the common sense notion that when one router is updated, all the rest must likewise be updated, which requires substantial planning and attention to detail (not to mention significant time and money).  While upgrading routers periodically is certainly a nuisance, not performing them en masse would be akin to individual users running disparate versions of the Microsoft operating system and office suites within a company – a seriously problematic proposition since the number of security vulnerabilities would skyrocket.

Many banks also simply don’t have an accurate, updated list of all the routers in their organization, not to mention each router’s individual IOS level and almost certainly, its configuration. Asset management has long been a problem for all companies and banks are no exception. Corporate policy is frequently bypassed and end-users often connect their own devices (USBs, smartphones, and even routers) into the corporate backbone. While there are security awareness techniques designed to stem the rush of employees connecting non-corporate devices to the company’s IT infrastructure, insider activity is still the number one vector of information security breaches within all corporations. Moreover, since keeping track of all infrastructure equipment is a monumental task – especially since proper change management policies are often by-passed, many firms don’t perform as good a measure of due diligence in terms of patching routers as they should.

Still another reason why router upgrades are problematic for financial institutions is tied to the configuration that many routers have been specifically tuned, or set at. Internet-facing ports are a time-tested invitation for exploitation from outside the firm and significant time and effort must be expended to ensure that these ports are all closed while simultaneously enabling only those ports that are critical for the firm to operate. Each time a router is updated, the configuration is lost and must be set again to match corporate policy guidelines; failure to reset the proper configuration causes vulnerabilities inside the firm to reappear.

Understanding some reasons why financial institutions do not invest the proper time needed for router software updates, here are some simple questions for IT security management to simplify the process and ensure protection for wireless networks: (1) Do you have a list of all routers in your organization, the IOS level and the configuration? (2) Have you validated the authenticity of the vendor you purchased your routers from? (3) When was the last time you checked your routers’ configuration and does it match policy? (4) Have you checked that it hasn’t been modified on a daily or weekly basis? (5) Are you logging improper events and staying vigilant? (6) Are you continuously making sure that there are no open ports facing the internet?

Due diligence on the part of maintaining your bank’s many routers can go a long way in ensuring that your customers – and their trust – remain loyal.

Gabberty is a professor of information systems at Pace University in New York City. An alumnus of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and New York University Polytechnic Institute, he has served as an expert witness in telecommunication and information security at the federal and state levels and holds numerous certifications from SANS & ISACA.

Note: This article first appeared on Banking.com on June 26th, 2014.

India gets a new prime minister …aaand a NEW PRESIDENT?

Not to take anything away from Mr. Modi, but this celebration’s a little closer to the heart!

Congratulations to our very own Seidenberg grad student – Arbaaz Sayyed, on being elected the new President of the Pace Indian Students Association (PISA).

We were lucky enough to spend some time with him before he headed off to India for the summer – one heck of a victory lap and some serious planning for PISA! Here’s what we found out.

Arbaaz Sayyed, President, PISA
Arbaaz Sayyed, President, PISA

Q. Pick 5 words that describe you the best.

A. Leader. Perfectionist. Experienced. Sociable. Um, modest? (…he said with a wide grin)

Q. What makes you qualified for this role?

A. Within the last 8 years, I’ve been a Committee Member, an Organizational Secretary, and a Chairperson. I’ve even coordinated activities for the IEEE in India .It becomes a-lot more fun when you love what you do. My first job at Pace was with SDACA. We did some great work for the student body.

Q. Tell us about PISA.

A. PISA is a cultural, professional and social association made up primarily of Indian students at Pace. Up until last year it was purely for Lubin students, but now it’s open to everyone. One of our main focuses this year will be to better connect with all the incoming international students so that we can offer them a better experience at Pace. I’d also like to slowly grow the work PISA does and collaborate with other existing associations & clubs at the university, so as to provide a more holistic member experience.

Q. What will your first move be?

A. Right now, our agenda is to plan and execute events for humanitarian causes, professional development workshops and networking opportunities for students.

Q. How can one join PISA?
A. Just walk into one of our meetings. It’s that simple! You can even email me at as07113n@pace.edu or call me on 646-492-8590. 

“It’s a proud moment,” says Dean Amar Gupta of The Seidenberg School of Computer Science & Information Systems.

Dean Amar Gupta

“The Pace Indian Students Association (PISA) originally started as the PISA Graduate Student Organization at the Lubin School. During recent months, its scope was widened to include Seidenberg, and we are honored that Arbaaz Sayyed from our school has been elected as its President. With his interest in Leadership activities and his diverse background, Arbaaz is ideally suited to lead this organization. My hope is that the scope of the activities and the membership will continue to grow under his leadership.”

                            

– Interviewed by Suhail Bhandari