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Civil-Military Symposium to focus on cyber operations Nov. 8-9 at UNG

Civil-Military Symposium to focus on cyber operations Nov. 8-9 at UNG
The University of North Georgia's second annual security symposium, "Civil-Military Cooperation and International Collaboration in Cyber Operations" will be held Nov. 8-9.

What government entity has the ultimate responsibility for defending our nation’s security in cyberspace? How does the U.S. plan to collaborate with other nations in the cyber domain?

These questions and many others will be asked and discussed at the University of North Georgia's (UNG) second annual security symposium, "Civil-Military Cooperation and International Collaboration in Cyber Operations" held Nov. 8-9 at the Library Technology Center on the Dahlonega Campus.

During the Cold War, the nation was under the constant threat of total annihilation from widespread nuclear warfare. After 9/11, the focus was defending against terrorists spreading panic through smaller-scale, coordinated attacks on multiple targets.

As recent events in the news continue to unfold, the country finds itself increasingly vulnerable to attacks in the cyber domain. The military, civilian businesses and the nation's infrastructure present themselves as targets to adversaries with the ability to infiltrate computer networks, disrupt operations, and either steal or hold information hostage for ransom.

The symposium, presented by UNG's Institute for Leadership and Strategic Studies (ILSS) the Center for Cyber Operations Education, the College of Arts and Letters and the UNG Press will feature several guest speakers, panel discussions, and poster sessions.

"Participants in the symposium are interested in cyber operations, particularly with regard to civil-military and international collaboration," said Keith Antonia, associate vice president for military programs. "The goal is to contribute to the scholarly discussion of security and strategic issues related to this complex domain”.

 Dr. B.J. Robinson, director of UNG Press, noted that the collection of symposium papers will published after double-blind peer review as a conference monograph by the UNG Press.

Antonia said cadets from the academies of 11 different nations, and affiliated faculty from the "Five Eyes" countries of Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, plan to attend the event.

The symposium's keynote speaker will be UNG alumnus Maj. Gen. Stephen Fogarty, chief of staff of the U.S. Cyber Command. Fogarty has a bachelor's degree in history from UNG. He is a graduate of the U.S. Army War College with a master's of science degree in strategic studies. He also holds a master's of science degree in administration from Central Michigan University. His military education includes the Military Intelligence Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, and the Army War College.

Other speakers include:

  • Bill Smullen, director of National Security Studies at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University
  • Jeffrey Collins, director of Air Force Cyber Worx, U.S. Air Force Academy
  • Leo Scanlon, deputy chief information security officer of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
  • Laszlo Kovacs, professor at the National University of Public Service, Budapest, Hungary
  • Janice Wethington, Chief of the National Security Agency – Georgia College of Cyber

Among the 14 panelists for a series of three discussions groups Nov. 8-9  are three UNG faculty: Dr. Bryson Payne, professor of computer science and director of the Center for Cyber Operations Education; Victor Parker, assistant professor of law in the Mike Cottrell College of Business; and Dr. Edward Mienie, executive director for strategic studies and external relations.

In addition to the panel discussions and speakers, cadets from Brazil, Italy, Japan, and the Republic of Georgia will present during poster sessions.

Those interested in participating in the symposium, e-mail Keith Antonia at  For more information on the UNG Security Symposium, visit the website.

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