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News
Photo of Jana Diesner 
 

During Super Storm Sandy, Twitter users sent more than 20 million tweets related to the massive storm (2013 National Preparedness report). This level of engagement with the platform could make Twitter and other social media platforms goldmines for disaster relief groups as they seek to improve internal processes and response times. Read more.

 
 
 
Photo of city skyline with connected digital techology 
 
CIRI researchers work to defend nation’s communication infrastructure

During the 9/11 attacks, emergency response dispatch centers were overloaded with calls that caused the system to crash. Since then, advances have been made to prevent these lapses in response, but as technology evolves and improves, so too must the security and resilience of our nation’s infrastructure. Read more. 

 
 
 
Attended events
David Nicol presents an award at the conference 
 
Maritime Risk Symposium

CIRI attended the Maritime Risk Symposium where Director and Principal Investigator David Nicol served as Vice Chair, Poster Session Chair, and Poster Judge. This symposium brings together academics, government, and commercial entities to discuss threats, vulnerabilities, and technological advancements to inspire the future of maritime transport. CIRI will be hosting MRS 2020 on Oct. 27-29 in Champaign, IL.

 
 
 
Jose Alejandro Medina Cruz presents at MxD 
 
MxD Manufacturing Floor Day

CIRI was proud to participate in the MxD Innovates 2019 Factory Floor Day in Chicago. As part of the event, attendees had the opportunity to interact with tech providers, view demos, and learn about research underway in manufacturing. Factory Floor Day opens up the building to event attendees to explore and discover all that MxD and its users have to offer. 

 
 
 
10 year anniversary slide from NICE conference 
 
NIST NICE Conference

Last fall, we attended the NIST NICE Conference, where we showcased our tools and explained how they can help educators prepare tomorrow's workforce. NICE gives industry experts, government agents, and educators the opportunity to discuss and brainstorm innovations in cybersecurity. The event includes a forum to showcase best practices and an oppotunity to signal strategic directions and priorities. 

 
 
 
CIRI Members at the Consumer Electronics Show 
 
Consumer Electronics Show

CIRI administration and researchers attended the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, sharing about everything from 5G/mobile communications to smart communities. CES is a conference open to industry experts and all those interested in the future of technology. It's a proving ground for innovations and breakthroughs in consumer technology. 

 
 
 
CIRI Researcher Jose Alejandro Medina Cruz 
 
FEMA Region V RISC

CIRI Researcher Jose Alejandro Medina Cruz dialed into the FEMA Region V RISC meeting, held in Chicago. FEMA Region V serves the states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin, as well as the 34 federally recognized tribes located in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan. This brings together stakeholders from across the spectrum of emergency management and serves as a forum for information-exchange and collaboration.

 
 
Upcoming events
 

CIRI will tentatively attend the following events in the coming months (some remotely, some may also be rescheduled):

  • April 14, 2020, Defense Cybersecurity Assurance Program Seminar in Indianapolis, IN
  • April 16, 2020, RSA Federal Summit in Washington, DC 
  • April 28, 2020, Maritime Risk Symposium Planning Meeting
  • April 28-30, 2020, Coast Guard Bridge Program Meeting, Washington, DC.
  • May 5, 6, 7 or 8, 2020, Maritime Security Center Annual Research Review in Washington, DC
  • July 2020, NDTA 2020 Surface Force Projection Conference Newport News in Virginia
 
 
 
New CIRI projects

Empirical Security Analysis of the Wireless Emergency Alerts System
PI: Sangtae Ha, University of Colorado Boulder
This project proposes a study that includes an empirical evaluation of the commercial mobile alert service (CMAS)/ Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) LTE physical layer attacks and possible defenses through the collaboration with commercial mobile carriers and government stakeholders. Specifically this work will replicate the vulnerabilities of CMAS/WEA, work to understand CMAS/WEA threats, evaluate a real-world attack response, and address discovered vulnerabilities. After those tasks have been completed the group will also explore mitigation solutions for found CMAS/WEA vulnerabilities.

Characterizing End-to-End Risk of the Telecommunications Supply Chain
PI: Iris Tien, Georgia Tech
Telecommunications infrastructure in the U.S. is rapidly changing, resulting in the introduction of new physical assets and operational procedures to the provision of telecommunications services. Varying elements of the supply chain pose risks in the ability to provide telecommunications services. It is critical to be able to identify vulnerabilities in the system to be able to assess and manage risks in addition to forming recommendations to mitigate and reduce risk. This project will comprehensively characterize end-to-end risk of the telecommunications supply chain.

Protecting the Nation’s 911 System from Cyber Threats Present and Future
PI: Karthik Balasubramanian, Karthik Consulting, LLC
Cyberattacks against the nation’s legacy 9-1-1 system have begun, Telephone Denial-Of-Service attacks have already occurred. The Department of Homeland Security recognizes the Emergency Services Sector, and specifically the 9-1-1 Public Safety Answering Points as part of the nation’s critical functions of its Critical Infrastructure, and one that is to be protected. This work seeks to develop guidance, approaches, and best practices that can assist large and small Emergency Communication Centers operations in strategizing and architecting their networks and organizations to address the highest risk areas.

Safety and Security in Remote Bridge Operations
PI: Randy Sandone, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
There is a growing request to convert drawbridge operations from onsite to remote operations over a cyber-physical control network. This must be done in a way that prioritizes safety and security. This research project will provide standards and guidelines that the United States Coast Guard can use to develop policy and regulations for remote bridge operations and will deliver an accessible, intuitive tool that can be used by remote bridge owners and operators to implement and maintain conformance to those policies and regulations.

 
 
 
    
 
 
 
 
 
 

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