It’s one thing to read about cyberattacks, quite another to actually infiltrate other computer systems, while simultaneously protecting your own.

Our Cyber Lab gives you a chance to put classroom theories to work and perfect your skills. You’ll work in groups to:

  • Simulate hacker attacks 
  • Secure operating systems from malicious activity 
  • Identify vulnerabilities and devise ways to remove them
  • Detect attacks and prevent or limit the resulting damage
  • Write code to detect anomalies and malware

This type of intense, hands-on experience is the only way to truly develop your cybersecurity expertise.

CCRA logo

The Cyber Lab is just one of our many security-focused labs and centers available to students, including the Center for Cybersecurity Research and Analysis (CCRA), which serves as the university hub for training, research, analysis, and programming in all things cybersecurity.

Our Cyber Lab is used by our students, plus outside members of the community, such as:

  • Current and potential members of the Fort Meade workforce use this realistic environment for specialized cybersecurity training programs and certification preparation classes.
  • High school and middle school students attend cyber security demonstrations and career awareness outreach programs.

The Cyber Lab’s Advisory Board includes members from:

  • The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Maryland MESA
  • Prince George's Community College
  • Prince George's County Public Schools
  • SAIC
  • UMBC

Cyber Battle Team Competitions

Our Cyber Battle Team - Signal 9 - competes in numerous cybersecurity challenges and competitions, including:

  • CCDC
  • Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition
  • PlaidCTF
  • US Cyber Challenge
  • DC3 Forensic Challenge
  • Defcon CTF Qualifiers
  • US Cyber Challenge Training Camp at Virginia Tech
  • HackLu CTF
  • MDC3
  • PoliCTF
  • National Cyber League Championship
  • NYU Poly CSAW (Computer Security Awareness Week) Capture-the-Flag
  • Stripe Capture-the-Flag
  • Mitre STEM Capture-the-Flag
  • ThreatSpace Capture-the-Flag
  • Ghost in the ShellCode


Dr. Kellep Charles, Chair of Cybersecurity
Dr. Rick Hansen, Technical Advisor
Dr. William Butler, Assistant Director

Cybersecurity explained in five functions

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) defines “Five Functions of Cybersecurity” that organizations should use to manage cyber risks. 

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