Munster Technological University (MTU) has received €250,000 in funding for a mobile Cyber Range which will allow the simulation of cybersecurity attacks to test the resilience of IT networks for business and industry clients and help train their cybersecurity personnel.
The funding was granted to MTU's Nimbus Research Centre at its Bishopstown, Cork campus. It will provide the centre with critical extra capability, unique in Ireland, to offer on-site cybersecurity testing for Operational Technology (OT) and Internet of Things (IoT) networks deployed on physical assets such as monitoring and control systems in the manufacturing and process industries.
The funding announcement is timely given the recent surge in high-profile cyber-security hacks, most notably an attack which crippled Ireland's health service recently.
The types of cybersecurity services that Nimbus and MTU will be able to provide with the mobile cyber range include:
- Test before Invest,
- Security Assessment by providing vulnerability assessments of new pieces of equipment on a factory floor,
- Operational tests and validation services allowing SMEs to simulate cybersecurity attacks,
- Training and education services in collaboration with the MTU led Cyber Skills project which aims to address the critical shortage of cybersecurity professionals nationally.
The funding comes from the Capital Equipment Fund administered by Enterprise Ireland through the Technology Gateway and Technology Centre Programmes.
The Centre for Advanced Photonics & Process Analysis (CAPPA), also based out of the MTU in Cork secured €300,000 to new provide new equipment in the areas of contaminant analysis, raw material purity and identification of unknown materials.
Shannon ABC, a research centre and technology gateway based in Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) and Munster Technological University (MTU), secured funding of €700,000 through three separate applications.
The equipment to be purchased includes a sample preparation and extraction suite, an environmental monitoring suite and photosynthetic growth chambers.
“These successful equipment applications will significantly enhance our research capabilities and thus enable MTU to provide further support to Industry regionally, nationally and even internationally," Michael Loftus, VP for External Affairs at MTU said.
"Achieving such recognisable results from a national funding call illustrates just how important Munster Technological University is in delivering quality R&D services across Ireland.”