R.I. State Police, CCRI train IT pros in critical agencies

NEWPORT – The R.I. State Police Joint Cyber Task Force and the Community College of Rhode Island held a three-day training workshop last week for information technology professionals who work within critical agencies and institutions.

Recognizing and responding to cyberattacks was the focus of the training.

“The support and partnerships between critical infrastructure and the public domain are a crucial part of protecting the country’s public health and safety,” said R.I. State Police Capt. John Alfred, director of the Joint Cyber Task Force and the Fusion Center, which promotes information-sharing for homeland security.

The training, held at the cyber range at CCRI’s campus in Newport, took place March 28-30. It was designed for those in IT in state government, utility companies, health care facilities, financial institutions and other “critical-structure” industries.

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The training, the result of former President Barack Obama’s Presidential Policy Directive 21 – Critical Infrastructure Security and Resilience – focuses on the shared responsibility among federal, state, local and other entities, as well as public and private owners and operators.

Seven of the 16 sectors took part in this training session. Alfred said he would like this to be the first of many such trainings for members of the JCTF on the cyber range.

The cyber range was commissioned in 2016 as a partnership between the R.I. State Police, CCRI the R.I. Emergency Management Agency, the R.I. National Guard and the Southeastern New England Defense Industry Alliance.

Susan Shalhoub is a PBN contributing writer.