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Virginia Tech IT Security Lab

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    image of machine room
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Virginia Tech Cyber Education

Virginia Tech recognized as quality cyber security education and research institution by Deborah Frincke, Deputy Director for Research, National Security Agency.

  Silver Bullet Talks with Deborah Frincke (PDF | 1MB)

Virginia Tech Information Technology Security Laboratory (ITSL)

The Virginia Tech Information Technology Security Laboratory (ITSL) focuses on education and research in computer and network security. Faculty, staff, and students work cooperatively on a variety of projects to enhance the security of systems and networks. Co-located with the Information Technology Security Office (ITSO), the ITSL has the unique ability to leverage production data from university networks for research and testing. The ITSL also relies on the advanced computer and network infrastructure of Virginia Tech and, in a close partnership with Communication and Network Services (CNS), uses the enterprise network for verification of designs. Research projects in the ITSL are tested theoretically, through simulation and modeling, and practically, through the use of production data and network.

Current research efforts focus on security in the Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6), enhancing network security through a moving target defense, optimizing the VTAlerts system, and converged security visualization. Virginia Tech started testing IPv6 in 1998 and currently operates one of the largest production IPv6 networks based on percentage of overall traffic. This puts the IT Security Lab in an excellent position to leverage production data for IPv6 research. A current research project is a patent-pending Moving Target IPv6 Defense (MT6D) that exploits the large address space of IPv6 to prevent attackers from being able to target systems. Another project is an optimization of VTAlerts, leveraging geospatial data to customize and prioritize individual alerts based on their proximity to an event. The intent is to improve notification times for those who will be immediately impacted by the event. Other recent work led to the creation of a converged security visualization tool which merges geographic information with real-time network attack data and physical models, providing geographic information about the location of network attacks.


The mission of the IT Security Laboratory is divided into 3 major areas:

  • Test computer hardware and software for security vulnerabilities, and to identify existing vulnerabilities.
  • Provide a testing facility for cooperative multidisciplinary research.
  • Provide active Cyber Intrusion and Incident monitoring handling support to the University.

About Us

Information about the staff.

    ITSO Location


Important notices from the IT Security Office.

Security Issues Blog

Security issues to think about.