88th Air Base Wing Office of Public Affairs
Air Force Materiel Command
December 15, 2009
By 88Air Base Wing Public Affairs
WRIGHT- PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio – A team of four Cyber Operations graduate students from the Air Force Institute of Technology’s Center for Cyberspace Research combined their cyber skills and interests in digital forensics to field a winning team in the annual DoD Cyber Crime Center (DC3) Challenge for 2009.
The DC3 Challenge is a call to the digital forensics community to pioneer new investigative tools, techniques and methodologies. An evaluation of the points for each challenge is based on the complexity of what the examiner normally runs into and has to adjust for, extract, or scrutinize in an analysis of those file types for the examination problems. This highly competitive and challenging event had 1153 teams requesting entries. Only 44 teams completed the challenge, 34 U.S. and 10 international teams from commercial, government, civilian, military, and academic institutions to highlight tools, techniques, and procedures that address the most troubling issues DC3 faces. AFIT's winning team has won a trip to the 2010 DoD Cyber Crime Conference where they will be recognized at an awards presentation and receive a plaque.
This year's challenge was a new 'twist' from previous years, presenting the participants a mock-up of what an actual examiner might face in a Digital Forensics Lab. This made the results much more complicated than in prior DC3 Challenge years. In the end, AFIT’s team, “Little Bobby Tables” consisting of Major John Borowski, Mr. Curtis Barnard, Mr. Mitchell Hirschfeld, and Mr. Justin Myers took the U.S. Division trophy while placing second overall in the competition that included international teams. Dr. Gilbert Peterson and Maj Eric Trias, Ph.D. served as faculty mentors/advisors for the team. Our students represented the Air Force and CCR in a superb manner. Challenges such as these demonstrate the value of graduate education and research and highlight the talents the Air Force is developing in support of the Air Force cyber mission.
Three out of the four members of the team are civilian graduate fellowship recipients of the National Science Foundation and Department of Homeland Security CyberCorps scholarship. This fellowship is awarded annually to qualified and talented students seeking graduate degrees in Cyber Operations and closely related fields. This fellowship covers the student’s tuition, books, and offers a $25,000 stipend a year. For additional information please visit the Center for Cyberspace Research’s website at http://www.afit.edu/ccr/.