CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Eleven Southeast students participated in an all-day cyber-security competition in a field of 11 teams from Missouri, Illinois and Iowa.
This competition was to assess the students' ability to defend a mock production business from professional "hackers" who tried to take their production systems offline and breach their security.
The students worked to prevent hackers while also handling network enhancements and upgrade challenges.
The competition was designed to create a realistic corporate administration and security experience.
Champions were awarded for each state, with Southeast Missouri State besting competition from Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Missouri.
Southeast students competing were Jasmeet Kukreja of New Delhi, India; Joshua Fairchild of Potosi, Missouri; Joe Niswonger of Cape Girardeau; Mackenzie Bonneville of Mapleton, Illinois; Lucas Kossack of Grantsburg, Illinois; Bryton Herdes of Xenia, Illinois; Steve Esswein of St. Louis, Missouri; and Jonathan Fulling of Bloomington, Illinois.
Alternates were Michael Maune of Villa Ridge, Missouri; Brandon Hathaway of Eureka, Missouri; and Ben Shell of Marble Hill, Missouri.
"I think the students did very well in context of the tough competition from MST-Rolla. I am very proud of them," said Dr. Vijay Anand, director of Southeast's cyber-security program, faculty advisor to Southeast's cyber-security team and assistant professor of computer science.
The team now advances to the Midwest Regional Collegiate Cyber Defense Qualification Competition March 17-18 at Moraine Valley Community College in Chicago.
The Regional will involve college teams from 12 states.
Southeast's Cyber Defense Team is looking for a first place finish after placing second in 2016, third in 2015 and second in 2014 at this event.