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Government selects Royal Holloway to help tackle UK's cyber threat

Posted on 13/09/2012

Researchers from the Information Security Group (ISG) at Royal Holloway, University of London have been selected by intelligence agency GCHQ and EPSRC to use their expertise to form part of the UK's first academic Research Institute to investigate the “Science of Cyber Security.”

Royal Holloway was selected along with three other universities, University College London, Imperial College and Newcastle University following a tough competitive process.

The new institute will bring together a diverse set of interdisciplinary researchers to tackle cyber crime and make the UK more resilient to cyber attack. The collaborative team will focus on driving forward the basic understanding of how to assess the relative security of an enterprise system – including its constituent technology, people and processes – and the effectiveness of different mitigation strategies. There will be a particularly strong emphasis on the human behavioural aspects of security.

Royal Holloway has been awarded £753,394 by EPSRC to carry out the project entitled Cyber Security Cartographies (CySeCa). It will be run by  Dr Lizzie Coles-Kemp, Senior lecturer in ISG, who has 21 years of experience in information security, 17 of which have been in security management.

The goal of the CySeCa project is to develop ways of visualising the different means in which both people and technology protect important data. CySeCa brings together the disciplines of art and design, network security and organisational security in order to develop a range of visualization techniques that better inform security managers about the strength of data protection across their cyber estate.

Dr Coles-Kemp said: “I am delighted at the award. This represents an opportunity to take a major step forward in information security visualisations and the team is excited to be given this chance to contribute to the development of decision support tools needed for security management in the cyber era." 

Congratulating the successful universities, David Willets, Minister for Universities and Science, said: “This new research institute will draw on the leading expertise in our universities from both technical and behavioural disciplines to address key challenges. It will help businesses, government and individuals to better protect themselves from cyber threats so they can make the most of the opportunities the internet presents.”


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