NUARI DECIDE-FS® Software Nominated for “Innovation of the Year” by FedScoop 50

Developed by the Norwich University Applied Research Institutes, the software has been used by key players in the U.S. financial system, including banks, regulators and government agencies, to test their response and resiliency during simulated cyberattacks.
Norwich University Office of Communications

August 31, 2016

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Norwich University Applied Research Institutes’ (NUARI) Distributed Environment for Critical Infrastructure Decision-making Exercises – Financial Sector (DECIDE-FS®) risk resiliency response software has been nominated by FedScoop 50 as one of the best and brightest technologies implemented this year that make the federal government more efficient and effective. Online voting to select the top 50 awardees in the IT community will close September 16 and winners will be announced October 4.

The FedScoop 50 Awards celebrate those people and products that make a positive impact in the government community and in public service. To vote for NUARI’s DECIDE-FS® technology innovation, visit: http://fedscoop.com/events/fedscoop50/2016/vote/#innovation-of-the-year.

FedScoop is the leading government tech media company in Washington, DC and gathers top leaders from The White House, federal agencies, academia and the tech industry to discuss how technology can improve government, exchange best practices and identify ways to achieve common goals.

Supported by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology (DHS S&T) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury and developed by NUARI, DECIDE-FS® exercise software has been used over the past three years to support the banking and finance critical infrastructure sector and its Quantum Dawn exercises.

The DECIDE-FS® software allows business leaders to rapidly test and identify flaws in their incident response plan when faced with a threat.

NUARI built the resiliency assessment platform, DECIDE-FS®, under a $9.9 million contract awarded in August 2013 by the DHS S&T Directorate.

The only system of its kind, DECIDE-FS® was initially designed to test U.S. financial sector cyber risk resiliency and has been adapted for use in other critical infrastructure arenas, such as electrical grids and health care. The software engages an organization by using a simulation that participants experience interactively with their peers, competitors and supply chains to simulate systemic risk.

“DECIDE-FS® is the only human-in-the-loop distributed resiliency assessment platform that allows industries to test their response plans in a safe and confidential environment for all staff to practice decision-making,” said NUARI President Phil Susmann.

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a member of the Senate’s Appropriations Committee and of its Defense Subcommittee, sponsored legislation that chartered NUARI in 2002 and announced the DECIDE-FS® contract at Norwich’s Northfield campus in 2013.

Through the simulation, individuals and organizations learn to operate under stressful conditions—similar to how simulators are employed to condition the response of pilots and mariners to emergencies—as well as develop more persistent tactics for countering the unknown. DECIDE-FS® grew in part out of war game simulations. Such games have been used for decades by military organizations to validate strategies and tactics and refine response plans.

NUARI has collaborated with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for nearly a decade, preparing individuals and institutions to respond to catastrophic network failures, natural disasters, distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks and other events that can impact market activity, communications, and essential services affecting critical infrastructures.

DECIDE-FS®, created at NUARI, is a massive, multi-participant simulation that effectively immerses industry decision makers, securities traders, IT and business continuity managers and others into complex, simulated scenarios focused on the effects of cyber incidents and other business disruptions.

ABOUT NUARI

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) was federally chartered under legislation sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy in 2002 and is funded in part through the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense. NUARI has a national center to address cyber incident management challenges through research, training programs and technology development and has been a global leader for more than a decade in developing cyber war gaming, distributed learning technology, distributed simulation technology, critical infrastructure exercises, and cyber security curriculum.
DECIDE-FS® exercises serve to strengthen the resilience of the nation’s critical infrastructures in the face of cyberattacks from nation-states and trans-national actors.

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). www.norwich.edu

In fulfillment of Norwich’s mission to train and educate today’s students to be tomorrow’s global leaders and captains of industry, the Forging the Future campaign is committed to creating the best possible learning environment through state-of-the-art academics and world-class facilities. Learn more about the campaign and how to participate in the “Year of Service” here: bicentennial.norwich.edu

Media Contact:
Daphne Larkin
dlarkin@norwich.edu
802-485-2886 or 595-3613(m)
Follow us on Twitter @NorwichNews

Norwich University’s Cyber Gaming Software Utilized in Quantum Dawn 3 Cybersecurity Exercise

Norwich University Office of Communications

September 17, 2015

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) tested its cyber gaming software yesterday with over 500 participants from over 80 financial institutions and government organizations in one of the largest financial sector cybersecurity exercises, called Quantum Dawn 3. Quantum Dawn 3 was organized by the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA). [See SIFMA’s statement here.] SIFMA engaged NUARI to provide a real-world simulation of a large-scale cyber-attack.

Yesterday’s exercise allowed some of the country’s largest financial institutions and some of its smallest to test their ability to maintain operations while managing a coordinated cyber-attack designed to interrupt the U.S. financial system.

NUARI built the tool, called Distributed Environment for Decision-Making Exercises – Financial Sector (DECIDE – FS®), under a $9.9 million contract awarded in August 2013 by the Cyber Security Division of the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate.

U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), a member of the Senate’s Appropriations Committee and of its Defense Subcommittee, sponsored legislation that chartered NUARI in 2002 and announced the DECIDE – FS® contract at Norwich’s Northfield campus in 2013.

“Cyber-attacks on our personal and financial and security systems are increasingly pervasive and damaging. Norwich University has done important and outstanding work in training future leaders and in helping to defend our nation’s critical infrastructure from cyber-attacks,” said Leahy. “I am proud that this respected Vermont institution contributes to our readiness to deal with this pressing national security challenge.”

The only tool of its kind, DECIDE – FS® was initially designed to test U.S. financial sector cybersecurity and can be adapted for use in other critical infrastructure arenas, such as utilities and communications.

“Experience is the best teacher. These Quantum Dawn exercises provide realistic training with measurable results and encourage information sharing, cooperation and coordination to work through the disruption. Operational incidents, caused by cyber-attacks should be planned for and building resiliency within critical infrastructures is paramount, not optional,” said NUARI President Phil Susmann.

DECIDE-FS® replaces simple tabletop exercises with a business simulation customized to individual business models, information technology topology, and organizational dependencies. Built on top of a financial markets simulation, business leaders are stressed with cyber threats that affect the markets – price, volume, latency, and utilities as well as how each organization is structured in terms of business model, value chains, and dependencies.

The daylong exercise on Sept. 16 followed two prior successful cybersecurity exercises in 2013 and 2011. All three Quantum Dawn exercises were facilitated by NUARI. While the prior two exercises pushed participants and the markets to extremes to determine when markets would close, the focus of Quantum Dawn 3 was to maintain operations in the face of a significant data integrity failure within post-trade operations.

Through the simulation, individuals and organizations learn to operate under conditions that simulate reality—similar to how simulators are employed to assist in the training of pilots and mariners to be prepared for and handle emergencies.

NUARI has collaborated with the Department of Homeland Security for nearly a decade, preparing individuals and institutions to respond to catastrophic network failures, natural disasters, distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks and other events that can impact market activity, communications, and essential services affecting critical infrastructures. DECIDE-FS® created at NUARI, is a massive, multi-participant simulation that effectively immerses industry decision makers, securities traders, IT and business continuity managers and others into complex, simulated scenarios focused on the effects of cyber incidents as well as other hazards.

For business inquiries, please contact NUARI at (802) 485-2213.

About NUARI

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) was federally chartered under legislation sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy in 2002 and is funded in part through the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense. NUARI has a national center to address cyber incident management challenges through research, training programs and technology development and has been a global leader for more than a decade in developing cyber war gaming, distributed learning technology, distributed simulation technology, critical infrastructure exercises, and cyber security curriculum.

DECIDE-FS® exercises serve to strengthen the resilience of the nation’s critical infrastructures in the face of cyber-attacks from nation-states and trans-national actors.

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). www.norwich.edu.

In fulfillment of Norwich’s mission to train and educate today’s students to be tomorrow’s global leaders and captains of industry, the Forging the Future campaign is committed to creating the best possible learning environment through state-of-the-art academics and world-class facilities. Learn more about the campaign and how to participate in the “Year of Transformation” here: bicentennial.norwich.edu.

Media Contact:

Daphne Larkin
Assistant Director of Communications
(802) 485-2886; (m) 595-3613
dlarkin@norwich.edu
Follow us on Twitter @NorwichNews

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes Names New Board Member

Bank president and CEO Thomas S. Leavitt will join the 11-member board, bringing particular expertise to NUARI’s financial-sector cyberthreat security work
Norwich University Office of Communications

April 30, 2015

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) named Northfield Savings Bank President and CEO Thomas S. Leavitt, of Waterbury Center, to the NUARI board of directors.

Leavitt joins 10 directors on the board, bringing 22 years of banking experience, including oversight of all functions and a history of community and board involvement.

A Burlington, Vt., native, Leavitt holds a BS in Business Administration from the University of New Hampshire’s Whittemore School of Business & Economics and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Leavitt will bring significant insight to NUARI’s focus on supporting the U.S. financial sector with unique cybersecurity tools.

“NUARI is at the vanguard of cybersecurity research and information assurance education. Leading an institution that is part of the nation’s financial system, I am acutely aware of the threats that must be vigilantly managed,” Leavitt said. “It is an honor to join a board comprised of leaders that have served at the highest levels of national defense, industry and academia.”

NUARI has collaborated with the Department of Homeland Security to help prepare individuals and institutions to respond to catastrophic network failures, natural disasters, distributed denial of service (DDOS) attacks and other events that can impact market activity, communications and essential services for critical infrastructure.

To that end, NUARI created DECIDE-FS®, a massive, multi-participant simulator that places decision makers, securities traders, IT and other stakeholders into complex, simulated scenarios focused on the effects of cyber incidents as well as other hazards.

In 2011, NUARI ran Quantum Dawn I, the largest critical infrastructure cyber threat exercises for the U.S. financial sector. A follow-up exercise in 2013, Quantum Dawn II, drew 50 organizations and 500 participants in the financial sector. The only cyber threat exercise of its kind, Quantum Dawn III is planned for later this year.

“NUARI is building upon its leadership in developing [its] cyber threat war-gaming platform, DECIDE-FS, and is looking forward to Tom’s significant service in banking and finance to help NUARI’s strategic focus in this area,” said Phil Susmann, NUARI president.

Directors serve two-year terms and can serve up to ten years.

“Norwich University and Northfield Savings Bank have a strong bond that dates to the founding of our bank in 1867” Leavitt said. “I look forward to working with Phil Susmann and the NUARI team to support the advancement of a vital 21st century mission.”

About NUARI

The Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) were federally chartered under legislation sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy (Vt.) in 2002 and are funded in part through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense. NUARI is dedicated to pursuing the ideals of Norwich University founder Captain Alden Partridge to participate in the building of the nation and to prepare its graduates to protect the American way of life. NUARI builds on the university’s status as a National Security Agency Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.

NUARI, a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, serves the national public interest through the study of critical national issues and the development of related educational and training programs by conducting rapid research, developing and deploying necessary technologies, and by addressing related policy, information management and technology issues to enhance a national capability for preparedness and response. NUARI accomplishes its mission by developing strategic alliances, partnerships, collaborations, and outreach programs with diverse public and private sector stakeholders, communities of governmental and non-governmental organizations, academic and research institutions, and business and industry associations and entities.

About Norwich University

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). www.norwich.edu

Media Contact:
Daphne Larkin
Assistant Director of Communications
(802) 485.2886; (m) 595.3613
dlarkin@norwich.edu

Norwich University Wins $2.3M FEMA Cybersecurity Grant

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Five universities that make up the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC) will blend their cyber terrorism and incident response education programs in order to provide nationwide critical infrastructure protection training.

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) has been awarded $2.3 million by the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help better prepare the country to defend itself against continuous cyberattacks and intrusions.

For the project, NUARI has partnered with the Criminal Justice Institute of the University of Arkansas System, the Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service, the University of Memphis and the Center for Infrastructure Assurance & Security at the University of Texas at San Antonio.

NUARI and its partners will develop numerous training products on cybersecurity over the next three years.

These include web-based, just-in-time training programs on cybersecurity, blended mobile training programs, comprehensive cyberterrorism defense courses and web-based training modules and podcasts.

“The entire NUARI team is excited as it leads the National Cybersecurity Preparedness Consortium (NCPC) in this opportunity to build programs to help defend the nation against cyber related threats,” NUARI President Phil Susmann said. He thanked the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA for recognizing the talent of the NCPC team.

The award is one of six training grants—worth $11 million in total—falling under the FEMA Fiscal Year 2014 Continuing Training Grant (FY 2014 CTG) program, which aims to train first responders, emergency managers, technical specialists, community leaders, and tribal and local governments to prepare for disasters.

The FY 2014 CTG program targets six areas:

  • hazardous materials and weapons of mass destruction
  • cybersecurity
  • countering violent extremism
  • maturing public-private partnerships
  • medical readiness/immediate victim care at mass casualty events, and
  • rural training.

As prime contractor, NUARI will receive and distribute the $2.3 million grant to partner institutions through subcontracts, administer the project, and be responsible for deliverables.

ABOUT NUARI

Norwich University Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) was federally chartered under legislation sponsored by Sen. Patrick Leahy in 2002 and is funded in part through the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense.  NUARI is dedicated to pursuing the ideals of Norwich University founder Captain Alden Partridge to participate in the building of this nation and to prepare its graduates to deal with threats to an American way of life. The institutes build on the University’s status as a National Security Agency Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.

NUARI, a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, serves the national public interest through the study of critical national issues and the development of related educational and training programs; by conducting rapid research, development and deployment of needed technologies; and by addressing related policy, information management and technology issues to enhance a national capability for preparedness and response.  NUARI accomplishes its mission through development of strategic alliances, partnerships, collaborations, and outreach programs with diverse public and private sector stakeholders; communities of governmental and non-governmental organizations, academic and research institutions; and business and industry associations and entities.

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Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). www.norwich.edu