CSU Cybersecurity Team Places 2nd at Competition

Columbus State University's cybersecurity team recently placed 2nd out of 31 teams at the Southeast Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition Qualifiers. CSU will now compete at the on-site regional at Kennesaw State University on April 3-4 for a chance to go to the national competition.

"I am very happy about the win because our students got rewarded for their hard work," said CSU computer science professor Yesem Peker, who coaches the team. "These types of extracurricular activities are great learning experiences for our students. They get to apply what they learn in academic classes and build, not just technical, but professional skills such as team work, communication, and time management."

The Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition simulates a corporate IT environment, in which the team is tasked with completing service requests as if they were the IT team of a company. The team provides common IT business services such as email, web, database, reporting, and more. They must also manage simulated cybersecurity attacks, in which they must identify and fix the vulnerabilities in their systems, detect any intrusions, prevent the threat from entering their systems, and complete and submit reports on the incidents.

In preparing for the competition, the team met with professionals at and outside of CSU to gain insights into the tasks typically completed by IT professionals. CSU alumni who participated in previous competitions also shared their experiences and advice on the competition.

"Overall this was great team work!" said Peker.

The team consisted of co-captains James Ericsson and Tyler Staut, as well as team members Brandon Corn, Matthew Bowen, Eloghosa Obasuyi, Justin Sewell, Matthew Warner-McKinley, and Christopher Wilson.