NIST to build cybersecurity research center in Maryland

The state of Maryland and the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) have announced a partnership that will create a cybersecurity monitoring center in Maryland. The center will focus on cybersecurity research with support from both the public and private sectors.

The new center will be called the National Cyber Security Center of Excellence and will be located in Montgomery County. Funding for the center is coming from NIST which will allocate $10 million from it’s budget for the center. NIST said in a statement that the goals of the center are to improve the security and trust in US technology and telecommunications systems.

To that end, NIST will be creating teams of researchers, users and private sector vendors to use and test cybersecurity products to find best practices, and improve offerings. NIST aims to support more widespread adoption of integrated cybersecurity tools in both the public and private sectors through this research. NIST will begin by placing a computer lab in an existing building close to NIST’s campus in Gaithersburg. The initiative will generate 23 new jobs in Montgomery County and is expected to help expand the e-commerce workforce.

Maryland Senator Barbara Mikulski commended the partnership calling cyber attacks a “new enduring war,” and emphasized a national need for this kind of research in order to protect national interests.

The partnership is the latest in several technology based initiatives in Maryland. Governor O’Malley has made technology a key part of his administration’s agenda pushing for new economic development in the sector and supporting technology improvements in state government.