Microsoft and REN-ISAC Partner to Enhance Network Security Information Sharing With Higher Education Institutions
At the annual EDUCAUSE and Internet2 Security Professionals Conference, Microsoft Corp. and the Research and Education Networking Information Sharing and Analysis Center (REN-ISAC) announced a new alliance that will extend the reach of the Microsoft® Security Cooperation Program (SCP) to include higher education institutions in its mission to enhance security measures worldwide. This new alliance marks the first time Microsoft has worked with higher education entities within the SCP, a worldwide program originally formed for government entities. The SCP provides a structured way for Microsoft to share information efficiently, improving responses to computer security incidents and decreasing the risk of system attacks at member organizations.
“This partnership creates an open dialogue with educational institutions to improve security through the SCP. Agreements such as this are essential to SCP’s mission to help protect critical IT infrastructures and promote computer safety worldwide,” said Alan Yates, worldwide managing director of education for Microsoft. “It is a very natural and helpful opportunity for Microsoft to work with REN-ISAC to allow its members to be more proactive and responsive to security dangers through cooperative projects and information sharing with Microsoft.”
The partnership provides a focal point for Microsoft to share vital security information with the research and higher education communities, represented by REN-ISAC. It extends Microsoft’s reach to that broader community and will serve to enhance the security posture, protection and response of the member organizations.
“The fundamental goal of the REN-ISAC is to increase and improve the information that universities and colleges can use to enhance the security of their networks and systems,” said Mark Bruhn, executive director of REN-ISAC and associate vice president for telecommunications at Indiana University. “This unique trust relationship with Microsoft will provide such an information source, from which we can impart important security and product information to our membership, and through which Microsoft will get input from real-life product experiences from typically complex campus technology environments.”
The collaboration with the REN-ISAC also provides Microsoft with helpful feedback from a private, vetted and trusted community of security staff at institutions of higher education, teaching hospitals, research and education network providers, and government-funded research organizations. Under the agreement, Microsoft and the REN-ISAC will share information regarding vulnerabilities, exploits and fixes and other information at a level of depth and detail that will help both parties become more proactive and responsive to issues affecting the global community.
As part of the agreement, the REN-ISAC has formed a Microsoft analysis team to serve as the conduit for information sharing between the organizations. Members of the team include lead IT security personnel from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Colorado at Boulder, New York University and Indiana University.
Additional information about REN-ISAC can be found at http://www.ren-isac.net. Additional information about the Microsoft Security Cooperation Program in government can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/industry/government/SCP.mspx.
About the REN-ISAC
The REN-ISAC is a member-driven trusted community for sharing sensitive information regarding cybersecurity threat, incidents, response, and protection. It is an integral part of higher education’s strategy to improve network security through information collection, analysis and dissemination, early warning, and response.
The center was established by Indiana University with close cooperation of the Internet2 and EDUCAUSE organizations to help protect the nation’s higher education and research community from cyber attacks. It is specifically designed to support the unique environment and needs of higher education and research organizations and supports efforts to protect the national cyber infrastructure by participating in the formal U.S. ISAC structure.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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