Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity Launched

The Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity, aiming to be a hub for research, training, and industry collaboration, opened at the University of New Brunswick on Monday with more than $4.5 million in funding and the establishment of a research partnership with a global technology firm.

The Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity will train skilled cybersecurity professionals and provide leading-edge research into a pressing issues facing society today.

“The Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity is a culmination of more than 15 years of successful innovation and research in cybersecurity at the University of New Brunswick,” Dr. Eddy Campbell, UNB president and vice-chancellor, said. “The creation of the institute allows us to forge an even more crucial role in developing security measures necessary to protect modern critical infrastructure in Canada and beyond.”

UNB notes that the institute was made possible with $2.27 million in funding from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency’s Innovative Communities Fund and through the Canadian Foundation for Innovation. The provincial government provided a contribution of nearly $2 million, while UNB is adding $330,000 in funding.

“The need for more cybersecurity support and services around the world is a huge opportunity to create jobs here in our province,” said New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant. “New Brunswick is already a world leader in cybersecurity. Enhancing training and research opportunities through this institute is another step in seizing this significant economic opportunity.”

Matt DeCourcey, Member of Parliament for Fredericton on behalf of Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and Minister responsible for ACOA, and New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant joined Dr. Campbell for the opening of institute.

“The Government of Canada, through ACOA, is pleased to support the establishment of the CIC. As this generation moves quickly to adopt the most modern of digital applications such as next generation and mobile technologies, cybersecurity is an important strategic sector, representing huge opportunities and potential for economic growth that will benefit this region for years to come,” DeCourcey said.

New Brunswick is aiming to transform its economic landscape toward a knowledge-based economy by strategically focusing on innovation in cybersecurity. The worldwide cybersecurity market is large and growing, with market sizing estimates ranging from $75 billion in 2015 to $170 billion by 2020. The size of the market is a response to the rising global cost of cyberattacks, which is expected to grow to $2.1 trillion by 2020. As a result, there is intense interest in the development of new-generation cybersecurity solutions.

Dr. Ali Ghorbani, Canada Research Chair in Cybersecurity at the University of New Brunswick and dean of the faculty of computer science at the university, serves as director of the institute.

“The Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity is poised to alter the cyberwarfare landscape by propelling research, training and collaboration with governments and industry to new levels,” said Dr. Ghorbani.

IBM is the institute’s first research and development partner, helping to fund skilled resources in the field of cybersecurity and other in-kind contributions such as technical and management resources to provide project oversight and mentorship for students.

This partnership builds on IBM’s history of investments and partnerships across the province. In 2011, IBM acquired Q1 Labs, whose QRadar Security Intelligence Platform was developed in partnership with the University of New Brunswick. The acquisition served as a catalyst for IBM to form its security division, which is now a $2-billion business employing more than 8,000 researchers, developers, and security experts across 133 countries worldwide.

IBM maintains a research and development and customer support center in Fredericton, which provides support for more than 5,000 customers around the globe.

UNB notes that since 2000, the university has played an important role in the success of cybersecurity research and innovation in New Brunswick. Today, UNB’s faculty of computer science has the largest network security research group in Canada.

The institute, housed at existing facilities on UNB’s Fredericton campus, is a multidisciplinary training, research and development, and entrepreneurial unit that will operate in collaboration with researchers in the social sciences, business, computer science, engineering, law, and science, as well as other national and international research centers.

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