The number of computer-based crimes reported against the information and economic infrastructure of our society continues to increase. In addition, a number of troubling trends have emerged: the time from the discovery of a vulnerability to the creation of its exploit has shortened dramatically; attackers are increasingly focusing on attacks that cause the most harm to public and private networks; confidential data is increasingly becoming the focus of attacks in support of criminal activity; and attackers are developing large, highly sophisticated networks of “compromised” computers for denial-of-service and other cyber attacks. Despite these risks, due to the impact of global competition, organizations of all shapes and sizes are establishing “web identities” and looking to computing technologies and interconnectivity to enhance their employee productivity. These trends have lead to additional responsibilities for system administrators along with the emergence of a new computing specialization, that of the computer security specialist.
This Master of Science program incorporates fundamental computing security concepts and practices from software engineering, computer science, and computer networking and systems administration. While, some of the courses are available in both on-campus and online formats, this program is only available for on-campus study.
>> Starting in fall 2013, with the RIT calendar conversion, this program will be offered in a 15-week semester format; see the anticipated program outline later in this page. <<
This innovative program is designed to enable students to understand the theoretical foundations of computing security, to join a team of professionals solving the challenges of ensuring secure computing environments, and to become leaders within their organizations in the implementation of computing security and information assurance policies and practices. Alternately, this program can prepare students for further academic study and careers in either academia or research.
The quarter version of MS/CSIA program is built upon a core of 7 courses that provide a solid foundation in the theoretical principles and best practices underlying computer security and information assurance today. This foundation is intended to ensure that graduates have the intellectual capabilities and the technical tools necessary to pursue careers in this challenging and ever evolving field. Students develop an area of expertise by selecting 4 related, depth courses from the following areas, among others:
- Enterprise security and security audits
- Malware and computer forensics
- Security algorithms and cryptography
This program of study is capped off with a 4-credit thesis which is completed under the guidance of the program faculty.
In semesters, starting fall 2013, this program will broader to include other computing security areas beyond those in networked communications.
Core Knowledge Areas
The following key knowledge areas are fundamental to this program of study:
- Secure software,
- Network security.
Anticipated Semester Program Design
Starting in fall 2013, the revised MS/CSIA program - renamed MS/Computing Security - will be 30 semester-credits of graduate study consisting of:
- 3 core courses (9 credits); focusing on foundation security theory, forensics concepts, and research practices
- 5 or 6 elective courses (15 - 18 credits), depending upon the capstone option chosen, to develop breadth and depth in security topics of individual interest
- the MS capstone experience: a thesis (6 credits), a project (3 credits), or a capstone course (3 credits)
This program is designed for individuals whose undergraduate major, or minor, was in a computing discipline with a solid theoretical foundation as well as those who have a strong background in a field to which computers are applied, such as Engineering, Science, or Mathematics. Students applying without this background will need to complete bridge study to ensure that they have the prerequisite knowledge necessary for success.
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