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Cadets Trade the Trenches for Firewalls

Cadets Trade the Trenches for Firewalls
Cadets Trade the Trenches for Firewalls

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The New York Times
May 10, 2009

WEST POINT, N.Y. -- The Army forces were under attack. Communications 
were down, and the chain of command was broken.

Pacing a makeshift bunker whose entrance was camouflaged with netting, 
the young man in battle fatigues barked at his comrades: =E2=80=9CThey are 
flooding the e-mail server. Block it. I=E2=80=99ll take the heat for it.=E2=80=9D

These are the war games at West Point, at least last month, when a team 
of cadets spent four days struggling around the clock to establish a 
computer network and keep it operating while hackers from the National 
Security Agency in Maryland tried to infiltrate it with methods that an 
enemy might use. The N.S.A. made the cadets=E2=80=99 task more difficult by 
planting viruses on some of the equipment, just as real-world hackers 
have done on millions of computers around the world.

The competition was a final exam of sorts for a senior elective class. 
The cadets, who were computer science and information technology majors, 
competed against teams from the Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and 
Merchant Marine as well as the Naval Postgraduate Academy and the Air 
Force Institute of Technology. Each team was judged on how well it 
subdued the threats from the N.S.A.


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LayerOne 2009, Information Security for the discerning professional. 
May 23-24 2009 @ The Anaheim Marriott in Anaheim, California 
Visit for more information 


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