Information Security and Assurance
The Bachelor of Applied Science with a concentration in Information Security and Assurance (BAS-ISA) degree program is the first of its kind at a public institution in Hawai‘i and the Pacific. In response to national and state need for graduates with education in Information Security, the University of Hawai‘i - West O‘ahu, in cooperation with Honolulu Community College, state and federal law enforcement agencies, state security officials, and local businesses, forward an expansive security education program covering a wide variety of technical and managerial aspects within the field.
UH West O‘ahu’s Bachelor of Applied Science with a concentration in Information Security and Assurance (ISA) degree, in partnership with Honolulu Community College’s associate’s degree program in Computing, Electronics and Networking Technologies (CENT), provides graduates with the higher-level management background and cutting-edge technical skills needed to be successful in the workforce. Students may attend both programs simultaneously or sequentially and can receive both an associate’s degree from Honolulu Community College and a bachelor’s degree from UH West O‘ahu. Courses at UH West O‘ahu are offered in-class and through distance learning instruction.
CAREERS & EARNING POTENTIAL
Job opportunities in information security and assurance are abundant and highly lucrative. Careers ISA graduates may be qualified for include Information Security Crime Investigator/Forensics Expert, System, Network, and/or Web Penetration Tester, Forensic Analyst, Network Security Engineer, or Security Analyst. Graduates may work in corporate information technology departments as well as develop their own computer consulting companies.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor, Information Security Analysts and Computer Network Architects earn roughly $75,000 a year. The projected employment for Information Security Analysts and Computer Network Architects, from 2010 to 2020, is expected to grow faster than average at 22 percent. An excerpt from the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook:
Cyber attacks have grown in frequency and sophistication over the last few years, and many organizations are behind in their ability to detect these attacks. Analysts will be needed to come up with innovative ways to prevent hackers from stealing critical information or creating havoc on computer networks.
The federal government is expected to greatly increase its hiring of information security analysts to protect the nation’s critical information technology (IT) systems. In addition, as the healthcare industry expands its use of electronic medical records, ensuring patients’ privacy and protecting personal data are becoming more important. More information security analysts are likely to be needed to create the safeguards that will satisfy patients’ concerns.
ISA 320: Fundamentals of Secure Software Programming
This course primarily focuses on security throughout the software development lifecycle. This means knowing and understanding common risks (including implementation bugs and architectural flaws), designing for security, and subjecting all software artifacts to thorough, objective risk analyses and testing.
ISA 330: Introduction to Proactive System Security
This course introduces students to how hackers attack computers and networks and how to protect against these attacks. This is a hands-on learning course where students will be exposed to and perform many of the various types of attacks in order to understand how to defend against them. Legal implications and ethical issues will also be addressed.
ISA 340: Introduction to Digital Forensics
This course is designed to provide the student with a good understanding on the field of digital forensics. The course will focus on the field of Digital Forensics including legal and investigative viewpoints. Forensic analysis and digital evidence over a wide range of technologies (like Networks, mobile devices, and Windows, Linux, Mac and embedded systems) will be reviewed.
ISA 400: Management of Information Security
This course primarily focuses on the managerial aspects of information security, such as access control models, information security governance, and information security program assessment and metrics. Coverage on the foundational and technical components of information security is included to reinforce key concepts.
ISA 450: Modern Cyber Conflicts
This course explores the battlefields, participants and the tools and techniques used in modern cyber conflicts. An overview of how cyber conflicts are carried out, how they will change in the future and how to detect and defend against espionage (like hacktivism, insider threats and non-state actors like organized criminals and terrorists) will be accomplished.
INFORMATION ASSURANCE COURSEWARE CERTIFICATION
The Committee on National Security Systems and the National Security Agency have certified that both the University of Hawai‘i - West O‘ahu and Honolulu Community College, offers a set of courseware that has been reviewed by National Level Information Assurance Subject Matter Experts and determined to meet National Training Standard for Information Systems Security Professionals (NSTISSI 4011, and CNSS 4012) for academic years 2013-2018.
Dr. David Pai, Assistant Professor