Hands-on Learning Experiences for Cyber Threat Hunting Education

Cyber threat hunting has emerged as a critical part of cyber security practice. However, there is a severe shortage of cybersecurity professionals with advanced analysis skills for cyber threat hunting. More specifically, automation using Artificial Intelligence is reducing the need for human intervention in cyber defense, at the same time, it has increased the demand for cybersecurity professionals with more advanced analysis skills. As corroborated by a recent survey of IT professionals by SANS Institute, cyber threat hunting is an example of advanced analysis skills in great demand.

We are developing freely-available, hands-on learning materials for cyber threat hunting suitable for use in two-year community college curriculum, 4-year universities curriculum, as well as for collegiate threat hunting competitions. The objectives of this project are: (1) develop hands-on learning experiences that cover two important areas in threat hunting: threat analysis and security data analytics, and (2) build institutional capacity by integrating hands-on labs on threat hunting into existing curricula at two participating institutions: UNC Charlotte and Forsyth Tech.

Publication and Presentation:

  • Jinpeng Wei, Bill Chu, Deanne Cranford-Wesley, and James Brown. A Laboratory for Hands-on Cyber Threat Hunting Education. Journal of The Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education, Volume 7, No. 1, Full paper.
  • Jinpeng Wei, Bill Chu, and Deanne Cranford-Wesley. A Laboratory for Hands-on Cyber Threat Hunting Education. Proceedings of the 23rd Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education (CISSE), Las Vegas, Nevada, June 2019. Download (294 KB).
  • Md Nazmus Sakib Miazi, Mir Mehedi Pritom, Mohamed Shehab, Bill Chu and Jinpeng Wei. The Design of Cyber Threat Hunting Games: A Case Study. Proceedings of 26th International Conference on Computer Communication and Networks (ICCCN 2017), July 31-Augus 3, 2017, Vancouver, Canada. Download.
  • Hands-on Learning Experiences for Cyber Threat Hunting Education. 2018 CAE in Cybersecurity Symposium, November 8, 2018, Miami, FL. Slides.
  • Learning Materials:

    To access our free hands-on learning materials, please click here.

    Acknowledgement: National Security Agency grant H98230-17-1-0354

    National Security Agency
    UNC Charlotte
    Forsyth Tech