Downtown course aims to tighten Internet security net
Students learn to target threats ranging from viruses to theft
in course moving soon to UBC at Robson Square
by Don Wells staff writer
An innovative program offered by Continuing Studies aims
to arm wired companies with solutions to a growing problem -- Internet
"It's surprising how many companies don't see the value of an investment
in systems security," says program director Chuck Wilmink. "Once
they've been hacked, though, they get it."
The Certificate Program in Internet and Technology Security is
Western Canada's only comprehensive course on how to protect electronic
systems from everything from unauthorized use by employees to virus
protection and large-scale electronic theft.
It is among the programs that will soon be offered at UBC's new
Robson Square campus. The campus officially opens later this month.
"We need to be downtown so that we can wake up the business community
to how serious a problem this is," says Wilmink, a UBC mathematics
alumnus with almost 15 years of experience in the security industry.
In the United States alone, the FBI estimates some 809,000 credit
cards were stolen over the Web in the first quarter of 2000.
The first class of 17 students began the 10-month course in February
and another group of 15 started this fall.
The course requires only mid-level computer knowledge as the focus
is on theoretical training that teaches students what they need
to be aware of in order to make systems secure. .
Students include information technology managers, systems administrators,
auditors or corporate security managers whose jobs now include systems
Approximately a third are sponsored by their employers. Others
see it as a way of maintaining a competitive edge in the IT job
market, Wilmink says, while a handful are police officers contemplating
new careers in technology security.
The program is a joint venture between Continuing Studies, the
Justice Institute of B.C. and the Canadian Centre for Information
An information session on the Internet and Technology Security
certificate program will be held Nov. 6 at 6:30 p.m. at UBC at Robson
Square (800 Robson St.) To reserve a space at the session, call
604-822-1420. For more information on UBC at Robson Square programs,
Open House that day and Dec. 1 features UBC speakers, exhibits