Webster University Launches Cyberspace Research Institute

Student analyzes computer and smartphone CRI provides members with cutting-edge security resources

ST. LOUIS (MAY 28, 2015) - Webster University is broadening its spectrum of research and resources for global security professionals. The newly created Webster University Cyberspace Research Institute (CRI) offers digital laboratories for Institute members, students and faculty to explore the most current cyberspace and security issues and threats. The Webster University CRI will combat disruptive technologies and create collaborative research.

 “Webster University is taking the lead in advancing knowledge and gaining security within cyberspace boundaries,” said Elizabeth (Beth) J. Stroble, Webster University’s president. “Cyberspace has increased the rate of creating and advancing knowledge while fostering dialogue and understanding that defies all boundaries. As leaders in this space, we are proud to launch an Institute that will help accelerate learning and applications to safeguard individuals’ lives and data.”

The goal of the Institute is to foster an ongoing global transformative multi-disciplinary research and learning environment impacting small, medium and large organizations’ financial and industrial control systems.

“The world’s most pressing threats in both the public and private sectors require overseeing, operating and protecting critical computer systems, information, networks, infrastructures and communications networks from cyber crime, cyber fraud and cyber espionage,” said Julian Schuster, Webster University’s provost, senior vice president and chief operating officer. “The Webster University CRI provides a robust and dynamic learning environment in which we will address and solve some of the challenges of our times.”

The Institute is home to four cyber laboratories:

  • The Cybersecurity Networking Laboratory allows experimentation of potential security threats in a secure networked environment.
  • The Emanations Laboratory uses sound, light and radio frequencies to exchange information, experiment on signaling and interference, and test the limits of communications, interception, and interference.
  • The Knowledge Sharing Laboratory has incoming feeds from a variety of organizations to explore and analyze information, and houses a developing trusted knowledge repository associated with other Institute projects.
  • The Web Services Laboratory supports teaching and experimentation and acts as an access portal to the other laboratories.

“The CRI brings knowledge through the development and sharing of professional activities, from corporate training to building professional competencies,” said Thomas Johnson, Webster University’s associate vice president and chief of strategic initiatives. “By bringing academics and businesses into a collaborative environment, the CRI will further expand the knowledge and techniques necessary to better secure and protect our virtual environments.”

The Webster University CRI also will support several initiatives, including:

  • ITrust Project, a multi-national, interdisciplinary research project, exploring issues concerning digital records and Internet data. Its goal is to generate theoretical and methodological frameworks to develop local, national and international policies, procedures, regulations, standards and legislation designed to ensure public trust, a strong digital economy and persistent digital memory.
  • ICS-ISAC Cooperative Agreement through the Industrial Control Systems Information Sharing and Analysis Center. This is a nonprofit knowledge-sharing center established to help facilities develop situational awareness in support of local, national and international security and cooperation.
  • Governmental, Military & Industry Research Activities supporting research and development efforts both in collaborative work with sponsors and in funded research. This typically involves creating research environments that can be saved and replicated for reproducible experiments that run over long time frames.
  • Competency Building Ventures through the development and sharing of professional activities. These range from corporate training to building professional competencies.  

The Webster University CRI is an important step forward in Webster’s commitment to the Science, Technology, Engineering, Math and Medicine (STEMM) industries. For more information about the Webster University CRI, or to learn about how to become a partner of the project and a CRI member, visit http://www.webster.edu/CRI.

With its home campus in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, Webster University (www.webster.edu) comprises an action-oriented global network of faculty, staff, students and alumni who forge powerful bonds with each other and with their communities around the globe. Founded in 1915, Webster is a private non-profit university with more than 17,000 students studying at campus locations in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa and in a robust learning environment online. The university is committed to delivering high-quality learning experiences that transform students for global citizenship and individual excellence.

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