AUGUSTA – The ribbon has been cut on the new Maine Cyber Range, aimed to train both students and professionals on cyber attacks.
Sen. Angus King (I – Maine) got a tour of a new cyber defense training facility at the University of Maine at Augusta.
“It’s pretty cool that Maine is actually a world leader in providing a facility like this,” said Sen. King.
The range is one of a handful of its kind around the country, but it comes at a time when hacking of private information and online influence is often in the news.
“And that’s why it’s important that in this state we’re on the front line of preparing a generation of individuals who will combat that threat,” said Dannel Malloy, the University of Maine System Chancellor.
Like an archery range, the cyber range allows users to go into a practice area with live viruses and malware, and learn in a safe environment how to detect and correct online threats.
“Most of the time, companies that are going through a major data breach are not in business within a year,” said Henry Felch, the director of Maine Cyber Range.
Sen. King said online threats are one of his biggest focuses in Washington, DC and he’s co-chair of a commission to establish a national cyber policy.
He said it’s a complicated issue, especially if the hacker lives in a foreign country.
“If nobody ever had to fear going to jail they would just be robbing houses to the cows come home,” said Sen. King. “How do we establish a worldwide compact or agreement or something that we’re not going to tolerate this wherever it comes from.”
UMA officials hope this new addition to their existing academic program can help Mainers be better prepared.