Tagged / ethical hacking

Research reflections 2022 – Your highlights: ECHO project showcase event

Dr Jane Henriksen-Bulmer, Principal Academic in Computer Science, writes about a three-day event that took place at BU in early December to mark the end of the ECHO project, which aims to strengthen the proactive cyber defence of the European Union…

This is the largest event we have ever arranged and the culmination of the H2020 pilot programme (consisting of only 4 projects, including ECHO) on Cybersecurity. BU is the one of only 3 universities involved in the project, with most of the partners being from industry (44 partners in all). We are the only project partner from the UK, so we have a lot to be proud of.

Presentations took place as part of the ECHO dissemination event

This event was the showcase for all the outputs from the ECHO project and we had an impressive line-up of prominent guests and speakers, both local and from Europe. On top of that, we involved 4 cohorts of students in the event, from L5 through to L7, so this truly is a fusion exercise where learning, teaching and industry come together to showcase the best of what we can do when we ‘fuse’ the three aspects.

The 3 days were jam-packed with excitement starting on the Monday with a kick-off event where we had talks from a number of prominent speakers from across Europe including ENISA, DG CNECT, Accenture, DSTL and ESET.

This was followed by a series of student-led workshops run by our final year undergraduate and master’s students (Huseyin’s Human Factors unit) where they interviewed the ECHO partners and conducted Human Factors evaluations on the Early Warning System, which went really well.

On Tuesday, we and our ECHO guests spent the morning recording some footage on the Green Screen in the Faculty of Media and Communication, which they are going to turn into an animation that we hope to use for dissemination. This was followed by a visit to BAE Systems’ STEP facility in Christchurch, where my final year business IT students presented their ideas for how the various plug-ins created as part of ECHO can be commercialised, which went down really well.

Students sat at computers

Students take part in an exercise as part of the ECHO event.

Then, on Wednesday we had the Incident Response Scenario where a group of second year students (Cagatay’s Ethical Hacking Unit) played blue team, defending multiple systems under attack. They then used the Early Warning System to raise tickets to warn of the attack as it was happening. It was a real eye-opener for them to see how this might play out in real life and they had a fabulous day, as did the observers and guests.

Overall, the whole 3 days were a resounding success, we have really enjoyed the experience (although we now must sleep!) and are hoping to host similar events in the future, watch this space!