Indiana State University’s rapidly growing cybersecurity program has announced three partnerships that will make students even more marketable in a field burgeoning with jobs. 

ISU Trustee Robert Casey, a former FBI executive, stressed the importance of developing the law enforcement and national security workforce of the future. 

“The cybercrime threat landscape is growing in complexity and severity,” Casey said. “ISU should continue to lead academic opportunities in this evolving field.” 

The partnerships will give students learning opportunities in a field that has only grown amid the uncertainty of the pandemic. 

According to CyberVista, a cybersecurity training company, “The truth is that today’s uncertainty has reinforced the cybersecurity industry and highlighted its growing importance in maintaining and protecting certain segments of our economy. … The sudden shift to remote and distance work created a dire need for cybersecurity professionals to secure networks, technology, and personnel activity.” 

These are ISU’s new partnerships that will train students to fill that need: 

• Magnet Forensics, a global leader in development of digital investigation software that acquires, analyzes and shares evidence from computers, mobile devices, the cloud and more. The company’s tools are used by over 4,000 agencies in 93 countries, helping to fight crime, protect assets and guard national security. 

“Students are learning hands on with real world examples,” said ISU’s Jason James, instructor of cybersecurity and information systems, “so they can not only learn the software that is used by so many digital forensics investigators in the field but also they will know how to take a case from start to finish and be able to jump right into a case right out of school.” 

• Paraben Corp., a leader in mobile forensics technology, is donating software licenses worth about $240,000 for use by students and faculty. Paraben is renowned for the details it can pull from computers, email, mobile devices, smartphones, and other devices. 

“Paraben E3: Universal is a great way for students to add to their resume with hands on work they do in our program, especially with real mobile devices,” James said. “Paraben is an industry leader in mobile forensic software and having the opportunity to teach mobile forensics using E3: Universal, we are creating opportunities for students with more companies that are looking for students having this expertise that would not otherwise exist.” 

ISU instructors will participate in the company’s training sessions and receive online training certifications. Students will have access to a digital forensics innovation conference and will be able to interact with company employees each semester. 

• FAIR Institute, which stands for Factor Analysis of Information Risk. 

Faculty and students will receive FAIR Analysis Fundamentals Training, which will allow participants to sit for FAIR certification for free. Faculty and students will receive certification preparation for free. 

ISU joins institutions such as Carnegie Mellon University, Boston College, and Georgetown University as Academic Partners of the FAIR Institute. 

At least 35% of Fortune 1000 companies use the FAIR model to assess their risk, and many have specialized positions only available to FAIR-certified applicants, said William Mackey, ISU assistant professor. “I’m excited to see some of our students begin to fill those roles, giving them great careers while helping to protect our data and businesses.”

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