NNU students monitoring cybersecurity threats with new program

Posted at 3:46 PM, Dec 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-24 17:46:19-05

NAMPA — There's a new cybersecurity program at Northwest Nazarene University, part of the computer science minor. Students are mentored by cybersecurity professionals and will be working out at actual companies.

One group of students will be working with the Nampa School District, developing a phishing campaign -- essentially sending them a scam email, and directing the staff to a training course if they click on the link.

While professionals are always needed, students will be able to help alleviate some of the demand.

"Most of the companies, they know they need this expertise, but it's just not practical, so what we hope to do is provide sort of an alternative so they can get the expertise without having to hire somebody or shell out a lot of money which they really don't have," said associate professor of computer science Kevin McCarty.

The NNU students are working with professionals from the information systems security association. The goal of the course is to give them real-life experience and increase their employability after graduation.

Another group of students in the program will be helping NNU with its cybersecurity. After this first effort, they'll be looking to help even more local businesses, cities, nonprofits, or schools.

6 On Your Side will introduce you to some of the students working in the community later on.