Merchant Marine Academy wins cybersecurity exercise

The United States Merchant Marine Academy won out over four other service academies recently in a cybertraining exercise organized by the National Security Agency and the United States Military Academy at West Point.

During the Cyber Defense Exercise, a team of cadets from each academy had to design, build and configure a computer network that simulated a deployed joint services command.

NSA and Defense Department security experts tested the networks over a four-day period, attempting intrusions and identifying vulnerabilities.

Teams were evaluated on maintaining services and their ability to recover from and prevent future security breaches, according to an NSA release.

NSA found that the USMMA's network was stronger and more flexible then the 2003 champion, the U.S. Air Force Academy. Other teams participating were West Point, a former two-time winner; the U.S. Coast Guard Academy; and the U.S. Naval Academy.

USMMA will be presented with the NSA Information Assurance Director's Trophy, which they can keep at the academy until next year's exercise.

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