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Home » Technology & Innovation » Next-Gen Talent to Lead Canada’s Cyber Defense

Canada needs more cybersecurity talent, and we need it now. As new technologies are developed at astonishing rates, so too are cyber threats. The University of New Brunswick (UNB) and its institutes, such as the Canadian Institute for Cybersecurity (CIC), have developed an entire cybersecurity ecosystem to prepare the next generation of cybersecurity professionals and improve the quality of cybersecurity education, training, and industry-led project opportunities.

Dr Rongxing Lu

Dr. Rongxing Lu

Assistant Professor – Faculty of Computer Science, UNB & Vice-Chair (Publication), IEEE ComSoc Communications and Information Security Technical Committee

Big Data has been widely regarded as a new “natural resource” and has become a key driver of economic growth and competitiveness in Canada. For businesses to adapt, we need to prepare a new generation of skilled Big Data engineers and reliable processing platforms to enable secure and privacy-preserving collaborative computing. However, currently, there are only few projects dedicated to security and privacy challenges in Big Data.

My research at UNB uses an interdisciplinary approach to investigate a set of advanced security and privacy technologies. It combines cryptography, distributed computing, and data mining techniques to provide secure and reliable data collection, storage, transmission, and processing for Big Data. UNB is cementing itself as a hub for Big Data and cybersecurity and as a clear leader in Canada, as we are solving industry problems while educating the leaders of tomorrow.

Dr. Dima Alhadidi

Dr. Dima Alhadidi

Assistant Professor – Faculty of Computer Science, UNB & Research Scientist, CIC

I am currently conducting research about privacy-preserving machine learning at the institute and lead a research project with TD Bank on threat modelling and threat intelligence. Our team consists of graduate students — all highly qualified individuals whose insights are providing benefits to the industry.

At the end of the project, these students will have industry exposure and experience, resulting in graduates who are well-rounded and ready for the workplace. They are learning the most up-to-date strategies and techniques at the institute and get hands-on experience with industry-leading organizations, including Google, Siemens, IBM, Cisco, and Sophos.

Dr. Arash Habibi Lashkari

Dr. Arash Habibi Lashkari

Assistant Professor – Faculty of Computer Science, UNB & Research Manager, CIC

My most recent projects are AndroidSandbox, looking at malware, and thread modeling along with Intrusion Detection/Prevention system (IDS/IPS).

AndroidSandbox is an analyzer that interprets the static and dynamic behaviour of cellphone apps to define a common behavioural pattern for detecting Android malware. The malware will normally ask for permissions to access different areas of the phone, spy on the owner’s activities, exploit the phone’s computing power to mine cryptocurrencies and use the device to launch different attacks.

On the flip side, in my second project, as the Canadian Honeynet chapter, we have implemented an online system with the capability to provide playback of attacker behaviour, allowing for novel, in-depth analysis of the attackers’ behaviour for anomaly detection and threat modelling. By delivering more than nine datasets such as AAGM, AndMAl2017, VPN-NonVPN, Tor-NonTor, and IDS2017, UNB is one of the pioneer cybersecurity dataset repositories and more than 800 institutions, universities, and security research teams around the world have used this information.

Dr Suprio Ray

Dr. Suprio Ray

Assistant Professor, Faculty of Computer Science, UNB & Director, Big Data Systems and Analytics Lab

Data systems are going through a major transformation due to the challenges of Big Data processing. To effectively manage and exploit Big Data, researchers at UNB are exploring the new techniques and technologies needed to transport and transform information into actionable knowledge.

Our research addresses the many facets of this evolving digital ecosystem. For example, one area being explored is the efficient processing of novel spatio-textual queries. With the growing data volume and popularity of Web services and Location-Based Services (LBS), new spatio-textual applications are emerging. With UNB’s unique environment and framework for Big Data and cybersecurity research and instruction, we can dedicate time and resources to advancing this field. As a hub for cybersecurity, we’re helping grow innovation and helping Canada realize its cybersecurity strategies.

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