N.J. gets Army help

The U.S. Army will help develop protection for New Jersey's government networks against digital terrorism.

State officials signed an agreement July 17 to have the Army Communications-Electronics Command Research, Development and Engineering Center develop an intrusion-detection system for state agencies. It's the first research collaboration between the center and a state government, said James Soos, the center's deputy director for homeland security.

A system for detecting electronic attackers is a main part of the state's homeland security plans, said its chief technology officer, Charles Dawson. The agreement will help state officials determine what is needed for an intrusion-detection and response program to cover the executive branch's 16 departments. The system will need to be able to detect attacks on individual computers and entire networks.

"Faced with a difficult budget situation, we are very fortunate to have built this relationship with [the center] to gain such a great deal of knowledge and resources," Dawson said in a release. The state will also receive guidance in developing program management.

An Army homeland security team at Fort Monmouth, N.J., will survey each department, analyze networks and critical assets, evaluate products, make recommendations, and develop an overall plan for the new system, Soos said. New Jersey gets to tap a pool of almost 1,600 scientists and engineers working in communications-related fields for the Army, Dawson said. n

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