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BU hosted the European Network of Cybersecurity Centres and Competence Hub for Innovation and Operations (ECHO) for a series of events to demonstrate ECHO’s assets and show partners and stakeholders what Bournemouth University has to offer. Computing and Informatics students were able to take part practical exercises, networking events and visits to local IT businesses. In her guest blog, Chelsea Eaton (BSc (Hons) Forensic Computing and Security), talks more about what she got up to.

Monday 5th December: ECHO in Action: BU Cyber Threat Intelligence in Business Launch Event

This event focused particularly on my academic studies in Ethical Hacking and Countermeasures. The event started at 9:00am and we started the day by receiving name tags which were printed onto seed paper so that they were able to be planted after the event had ended, either by university or yourself. We got to hear talks from ECHO partners: the European Union Agency for Cybersecurity (ENISA), Accenture, Dorset County Council, ESET, and the Directorate General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CNECT). It was really interesting to hear all about the cyber threat challenges that each industry sector faced. As someone about to enter the industry I find it very important to keep up to date with current issues and risks so that I can use this knowledge during my industrial placement. The event concluded with a panel discussion with the opportunity for everyone to ask questions.

I really enjoyed this event as this aspect of cyber security is exactly what I picked this degree for, getting to hear from real experts in the field and those who work in industry was truly amazing. I was able to make so many new connections on LinkedIn and expand my network, which will benefit my industrial placement search.

Wednesday 7th December: ECHO in Action: Cyber Threat Intelligence Exercise

This event was specifically for Ethical Hacking and Countermeasures students as we got the privilege to be the ones to trial the ECHO incident response system. We arrived at 9:00am to the computer labs where we received an introduction to the event from the ECHO partners and briefing on what was planned for us throughout the day. We began with an incident response exercise/scenario which was the main focus of the event, this consisted of a red team and a blue team where the students were the blue team defending against and attack and the ECHO partners were the red team creating incidents that the blue team were defending against.

At the beginning of this exercise all students were confused at how we were supposed to be stopping the attack however as time went on the groups started sharing advice and eventually everyone knew how to do our “job”, this was done purposefully to give us a taste of what starting in industry is like as we should expect to be thrown into work and figure it out as we go along.

Overall, this was an amazing event that I feel privileged to have been a part of and hope to carry what I’ve learnt from this experience into my industrial placement with me.

Wednesday 7th December: Computing Placement Pitch Event

The event began at 4:45pm with snacks and refreshments provided to all before the talks started at 5:00pm.

Employers were given two minutes to tell students about their industrial placement opportunities and what the work environment in their company is like. We got to hear from Greenwood Campbell, Vitality, Ibcos Computers Ltd, Bistech, Micro Nav, Crowd, ATLAS ELEKTRONIK UK and Finexos. After we split into pairs and got to question each company in a speed dating style where we had four minutes to get a more in-depth perspective on each company and the industrial placements that they have to offer.

After hearing from each company at this event I would recommend taking a look at these company’s industrial placements if you’re looking for a software engineering industrial placement or a hybrid industrial placement where you want to work on software development but in other areas of computing such as data science or cyber security. I thoroughly enjoyed attending this event and hope for more events like this in the future.

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