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Governor’s STEM Scholars Partners with NCRI to Train Students in Cyber-Social Threat Analysis

Launch of the Governor’s STEM Scholars Cyber Forensics Laboratory

The Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI) and the Governor’s STEM Scholars (GSS), a program of the Research & Development Council of New Jersey, announced today the launch of the Governor’s STEM Scholars Cyber Forensics Laboratory, a first-of-its-kind initiative to train New Jersey high school students in the emerging field of cyber-social threat identification and forecasting.

Through the Governor’s STEM Scholar Cyber Forensics Laboratory (Lab), New Jersey STEM students are developing the workforce skills required for open-source intelligence analysis, an emerging field at many intelligence agencies. Using publicly available information, such as social media traffic, the Governor’s STEM Scholars (Scholars) participating in the Lab will learn to identify and analyze threats to our national and state public health and infrastructure, online extremism endangering vulnerable communities, and social media manipulation of capital markets.

“Our youth are on the frontlines of where social media creates risk, so helping them develop next generation skills to mitigate these risks and be on the frontlines of the solution is key to ensuring that civil societies can endure this new threat landscape,” stated Adam Sohn, Chief Executive Officer of the Network Contagion Research Institute.

This year, nine of the 128 Scholars were selected to participate in the Lab, where they will assess foreign government manipulation of social media to affect energy sector supply chains. Using big data analytics, these Scholars will produce high-impact intelligence reports and climate models/forecasts on the threats impacting the public and private sector and local communities in New Jersey.

Scholars participating the in the Lab are:

  • Nima Fallah, a freshman computer science major at Rutgers University from Kearny, NJ, who i