Kobe MSIT-IS Team Wins IT Incident Handling Competition

June 15, 2009

A team of INI students at Carnegie Mellon CyLab Japan (Kobe MSIT-IS) won first place in an IT incident handling competition for students at a cyber security conference in Japan. The competition was held by the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan on June 5, 2009, at the 13th annual Shirahama Cyber Crime Symposium.

To compete, all teams had to have passed a preliminary contest in May, where competitors logged on to a virtual environment and played the role of security expert to resolve realistic IT scenarios. Four other teams qualified in addition to CyLab Japan: Tokyo Denki University, Doshisha University, Tezukayama University and Kansai University.

At the symposium, once again the teams had to role-play and work together to resolve IT challenges for virtual customers in real time. Eddie Yu-Fang Tsai, Cindy Pei-chun Su, Chris Yu-Lu Liu, and Yuki Osawa made up the four-person team for Carnegie Mellon.

"During the contest, Yuki, Eddie, Chris and I worked as a security team and constantly received security incident complaints from the virtual company. We were required to respond and solve these problems immediately, meanwhile negotiating with the CEO and manager of the company and convincing them accept the changes we proposed on their systems," said Cindy (MS20).

The CyLab Japan team beat out the others based on their speed, knowledge of cyber security, and communication between teammates and virtual customers. The CyLab Japan team was equally superb in communication as in technical ability, despite being a multi-national team competing against all-Japanese teams. 

"I'm extremely proud of my Kobe students for winning this prestigious cyber security competition in Japan," said Professor Chris May, technical manager of workforce development at CERT (Computer Emergency Readiness Team). "They all took my Applied Information Assurance (AIA 14-761) course this past semester and ended up at the top of the class. In AIA, students learn practical cyber-security skills and gain the critical experience required for responding to the continuously evolving cyber-threat landscape."

"Eddie, Cindy, Chris and I, all of us were responsible for each assigned task and helped our team win. It was a good chance for us to apply our knowledge that we learned in MSIT-IS program," said Yuki. (MS20). "We realized that solving problems in a real situation was really challenging. We all enjoyed the contest, and we are happy to win first place!"

The 2009 competition is the second time CyLab Japan won at the Shirahama Computer Crime Symposium. In 2006, CyLab Japan won first place, in a tie with Doshisya University.

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