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MSU receives award to improve cybersecurity

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Posted at 4:12 PM, Dec 13, 2022

BOZEMAN — Clemente Izurieta, Derek Reimanis, and Anne Marie Reinhold have been working together for years in the cybersecurity lab at MSU.

“What each person brings together and what we’re producing here is much greater than the sum of its parts,” says Reinhold.

Building on nearly five years of helping the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security improve methods for resisting cyberattacks, the team of professors is leading a new effort to reduce software vulnerabilities across a wide range of systems.

“So in other words what we do here, is software that will be used by the department of homeland security,” says Izurieta.

The project is funded by a $4.47 Million DHS award. It will draw on advanced computing and data science techniques to develop innovative tools for identifying computer code that could be exploited by cybercriminals or foreign enemies.

“Places like Russia, Romania, Iran, and China,” says Izurieta.

Izurieta says research possibilities aren’t the only exciting thing about this new award.

“We’re also putting together a master’s degree in cybersecurity that is going to begin next semester,” says Izurieta.

The funding is expected to support four doctoral students at MSU and four at the partnering universities. As well as several undergraduate research opportunities.

“We have over 1,000 job openings in Montana for the field of study,” says Izurieta. “Cyber security is a space that is wide open.”

Reimanis, a proud MSU alum says these opportunities make him excited for students.

“They get to write programs that get deployed, it lives, and runs somewhere,” says Izurieta.

“We are the college of engineering in the state and we have a responsibility to step up to the plate,” says Izurieta. “That’s exactly what we’re doing.”