By Ed Lowe
Post-Crescent staff writer
July 5, 2007
A new West Point graduate from Grand Chute is part of the first team to
build a computer network the National Security Agency didn't crack
during a weeklong hacker attack.
James D. Pleuss, 23, a 2002 graduate of Appleton West High School,
served on the West Point cyber team that won the 2007 Cyber Defense
"The NSA has a red cell team that attacks the networks, tries to hack
into the systems." Pleuss told The Post-Crescent.
"It was our job to use whatever tactics we could to keep them out and
make sure the network stayed secure."
The West Point team's network outlasted those of undergraduate cadets
and midshipmen representing the four other U.S. service academies, and a
pair of teams from post-graduate service schools.
"These are the people who check the White House (systems) for security,"
Pleuss said. "They say the White House (information network) is the only
one they have much trouble getting into using the tactics they have
NSA spokesman Tony Sager said the teams in this year's competition were
more accomplished than those tested a year ago.
"We see it as a good sign that we are challenged too," Sager said in a
Pleuss, the son of Jim and Mary Pleuss, will complete seven months of
training in Georgia before assignment at a post in Hawaii.
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