Department of Cyber Intelligence and Security's Cyber Defense News and Resources

Make Cyber Defense a Priority

The College of Business, Security and Intelligence makes Cyber Defense (CD) a priority. There are many ways for students, faculty and others to learn more about Cyber Defense and how to apply it in our increasingly digital lives. Here on our Activities, News and Resources page, you will find up-to-date information on Cyber Defense Activities happening on or around our Prescott campus, catch up on Cyber Defense news inside the College of Business, Security and Intelligence and around the globe, as well as find a comprehensive list of Community Resources available to everyone to help keep ahead of the curve on Cyber Defense.


Here you will find a listing of events and activities around our local community to help the general public understand, learn, and implement a higher degree of Cyber Defense in their digital lives. Check out some of our most exciting and educational activities to learn more.

The CIS Department continuously offers CyberPatriot camps over summer. Open to students ages 14-18 (rising sophomore, junior or senior in high school) who are interested in learning about cyber security. During this week-long non-residential program you will:

  • Explore the many aspects of cyber security.
  • Experience hands on activities on the computer and network (real and virtual).
  • Attend mini lectures on the latest in cyber security.
  • Meet other local students with interests in this area.
  • Participate in a cyber "capture the flag" competition on Friday.

Each week will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. with a one-hour break for lunch on campus. Cost includes: a Cyber Patriot Summer Camp t-shirt, lunch each day, access to software and computers. Stay tuned for the next summer camp offering we will have in summer 2024.

Embry-Riddle is a Silver Sponsor of CyberPatriot and offers CyberPatriot scholarship opportunities for incoming cyber program students in Prescott and Daytona Beach campuses. Embry-Riddle’s Cyber Intelligence and Security program has been a CyberPatriot silver sponsor since the spring of 2013. The Air Force Association (AFA) CyberPatriot program is a national youth cyber education program that now provides opportunities from K-12. The annual high school competition (now in its 12th year) reaches thousands of schools and tens of thousands of qualified student prospects through their website and newsletters.

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Cyber Patriot Scholarship Application

Since 2019, the CIS department has been offering multiple unique capture-the-flag (CTF) competitions to local high school students called CyberAero on the Prescott campus. Furthermore, since 2020, we have been offering the one-and-only aviation cyber CTF competition in the world at well-known international conferences such as AIAA, ACI Cyber Rodeo, Aviation ISAC and DEF CON events. These competitions increase participants' cyber intelligence and security knowledge (e.g., password cracking, log analysis, computer forensics and much more) as well as about cybersecurity problems, solutions, and challenges in aviation and aerospace! Some of these CTF offerings are linked below:

Internal News

Ever since our founding in 2013, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University has been forging new territory in the realms of Security, Intelligence and Cyber Defense. Here you will find some of our most recent news stories that will give you an inside look at what's going on inside the Department of Cyber Intelligence and Security.

Faculty from the CIS department have been organizing and chairing cybersecurity sessions and tracks at various workshops and conferences such as those sponsored by the AIAA, IEEE and SAE. Some of them are listed below:

On March 22, 2019, The College of Business, Security, and Intelligence welcomed its 4th Distinguished Cyber Intelligence & Security Speaker Greg Rice to present his discussion: Securing Future Aircraft

The growing communication capabilities and processing resources aboard modern commercial aircraft continues to demonstrate new potential for improving the efficiency of next generation air travel while further reducing safety risks to airplane passengers. However, with increasing system complexity and connectivity comes the risk of security vulnerabilities. This presentation presented an overview of potential security risks to future aircraft as well as the open and emerging research challenges in the space. 

Greg Rice is a Research Group Manager for the Cyber Systems research team in the Advanced Technology at Collins Aerospace. In 2006, Mr. Rice co-founded True Security, where he led design work on secure, ad-hoc sensor networks for embedded systems and new penetration testing services. Mr. Rice's work on the security of embedded avionics systems has been well recognized; he has previously served as PI for the DAPRA RAPID and Longbow programs and now leads a team of research engineers focused on the development of new embedded security technologies applied to airborne and radio communication systems. 

Distinguished CIS Speaker Series: Greg Rice - Securing Future Aircraft

On March 1, 2019, The College of Business, Security, and Intelligence welcomed its 3rd Distinguished Cyber Intelligence & Security Speaker Peter Skaves to present his discussion: Aircraft Systems Information Security Protection (ASISP).

Transport Category Airplanes are extremely safe due to fault tolerant designs including independence, redundancy, and no exploitable access points of failure that could on its own cause an unsafe condition during flight operations. But, as per the FAA, the two greatest threats to these aircraft is the exploitation of onboard electronic access points, such via the Internet, and counterfeit integrated circuits (ICs) and computer chips. This talk presented the various developments the FAA and the industry are pioneering to address these threats as well as future challenges and problems in aviation cyber security.

Peter Skaves is FAA's Chief Scientific and Technical Advisor (CSTA) for Advanced Avionics, including cyber security issues. During his 25 years at the FAA, he has had various assignments including Special Projects Team Lead and Special Assistant to the Washington, DC Avionics Branch. Peter developed software and systems requirements for various airplane programs including the B-2 stealth bomber and C-17 cargo airplane fly-by-wire flight control systems. 

Distinguished CIS Speaker Series: Peter Skaves - Aircraft Systems Information Security Protection (ASISP)

On Nov. 30, 2018, The College of Business, Security, and Intelligence welcomed its 2nd Distinguished Cyber Intelligence & Security Speaker Nina Vajda to present her discussion: Symphonic Artistry of Aviation Cyber Intrusions.

This presentation discussed aircraft network topologies including attack vectors, challenges associated with legacy systems, hardware design and common, known software vulnerabilities that create opportunities for attackers to exploit aircraft parked at the gate, during taxi, takeoff, and landings. Cutting edge technologies specifically developed for the aviation industry to thwart targeted aviation cyberattacks was also discussed. 

Nina Vajda is Honeywell Aerospace's Chief Engineer for Cyber Security. She is responsible for oversight of the development and implementation of security controls in embedded system architectures and networks for commercial transport and business / general aviation aircraft, space and defense equipment and satellite communications. Nina is a registered Metal and Non-metal Miner and possesses the following professional licenses: Hazardous Materials Technician, CISSP, CISM, CRISC, and she is appointed by the DoD as a Fully Qualified Navy Certification Validator III. 

Distinguished CIS Speaker Series: Nina Vajda - Symphonic Artistry of Aviation Cyber Intrusions

On Oct. 26, 2018, The College of Business, Security, and Intelligence welcomed its 1st Distinguished Cyber Intelligence & Security Speaker Mr. Bruce Schneier to present his discussion: Securing a World of Physically Capable Computers.

Computer security is no longer about data; it's about life and property. This change makes an enormous difference, and will shake up our industry in many ways. First, data authentication and integrity will become more important than confidentiality. And second, our largely regulation-free Internet will become a thing of the past. Soon we will no longer have a choice between government regulation and no government regulation. Given this future, it's vital that we look back on what we've learned from past attempts to secure these systems, and forward at what technologies, laws, regulations, economic incentives, and social norms we need to secure them in the future. 

Bruce Schneier is an internationally renowned security technologist, called a security guru by the Economist. He is the author of 14 books - including the New York Times best-seller Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect Your Data and Control Your World - as well as hundreds of articles, essays, and academic papers. He is also a special advisor to IBM Security and the Chief Technology Officer of IBM Resilient.

Distinguished CIS Speaker Series: Bruce Schneier - Securing a World of Physically Capable Computers

Considering the increased demand for cybersecurity professionals in Arizona and across the country, the College of Security and Intelligence at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Prescott Campus is now proud to offer a Master of Science in Cyber Intelligence and Security. 

“The number of cyber professionals needed in Arizona alone is 6,875 according to the website,” said Dr. Jon C. Haass, Chair of Embry-Riddle’s Cyber Intelligence and Security Department. “All of the programs in the U.S. don’t produce enough to fill the need, and we’re unlikely to catch up in the next ten years.”

Read the full article

Jerry L. Davis is the Vice President, Chief Security Officer of Lam Research Corporation. This discussion will define a notional corporate value chain and explore the consideration of security controls (physical, cyber and others) required to secure each functional element of the value chain and assuring the delivery of products and services uncompromised.

Dr. Ying is the immediate past President of the International Council of the Aeronautical Sciences (ICAS), serving on the Executive Committee which leads in shaping the agenda of this multinational professional aerospace organization. She’s currently the Senior Vice President of an electric aircraft start-up company Ampaire, responsible for the technology strategy and international relations. Her presentation overviews and highlights how innovations in commercial electric aircraft will make flying clean, quiet, safe, reliable and more accessible to everyone than ever before.

Distinguished CSI Speaker Series: Dr. Susan Ying - Aviation's Third Revolution; It Is Electrifying

External News and Resources

At the CBSI Department of Cyber Intelligence and Security, we encourage all of our students to pursue online news resources to stay informed, to keep up with the most recent trends in the field of Cyber Defense and to seek out opportunities for their own educational and professional endeavors. Here are a few valuable news resources and external stories covering Cyber Intelligence and Defense topics. 

CyberWire is an independent voice delivering concise, accessible, and relevant cyber security news to people all across the globe. As a cyber security-focused news service and a trusted, independent voice in the marketplace, CyberWire delivers concise, accessible and relevant content, separating the signal from the noise in a burgeoning industry, overloaded with information and competing messages.

Palo Alto Networks and Girl Scouts of the USA Announce Collaboration for First-Ever National Cybersecurity Badges

With the introduction of 18 new Cybersecurity badges, Girls Scouts of all ages will be able to explore opportunities in STEM while developing problem-solving and leadership skills.

Palo Alto Networks® (NYSE: PANW), the next-generation security company, and Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) today announced that they will join forces to deliver the first-ever national Girl Scout Cybersecurity badges for girls in grades K–12. Girl Scout badges are insignia Girl Scouts earn and display on their uniforms to demonstrate their mastery of a given topic. Led by a panel of expert cybersecurity advisers, GSUSA and Palo Alto Networks expect to roll out the first in a series of 18 Cybersecurity badges to Girl Scouts throughout the United States in September 2018.

Read the full article

Featured Story

CSI Students at the RSA Conference in San Francisco

Student Blog: CSI Students Attend the RSA Conference

My name is Kevin Hood and I am a Sophomore studying Cyber Intelligence and Security. During the last week of February, we visited San Francisco to tour Silicon Valley companies and attend the RSA Conference to help students practice networking, expose them to opportunities, and to make Embry-Riddle well-known in the cybersecurity industry.