Thanks to a specially constructed networking environment, students are learning firsthand how to keep information systems and networks safe. The new Business Information Security Laboratory (BISL), within the Department of Information & Operations Management (INFO), gives students real-world experience in defending their systems against cyber attacks.

The laboratory was designed by Michael Grimaila, a visiting professor in the INFO department, to provide students an independent environment where they can learn how to prevent cyber attacks without disabling Mays’ or Texas A&M’s computer systems.

“The sandbox environment isolates the BISL from the university network to allow the safe study of real-world cyber attacks that could destroy or disable computer systems,” Grimaila says. “Tomorrow’s business managers need to be firmly grounded in information assurance principles and practices. Presidential Decision Directive 63 made it clear that our national security, in part, depends upon the information assurance and security of critical infrastructure industries, which are predominately private sector businesses.”