New UVic Centre Focuses On Cyber Security And Privacy

Reliable, safe and secure—that’s what we expect from our information technology systems. Yet every day we hear stories of cyber-attacks and privacy breaches. A new University of Victoria centre aims to change that by conducting advanced research on cyber-security and privacy of IT systems.

UVic’s Centre for Advanced Security, Privacy, and Information Systems Research (ASPIRe) is one of the first research centres of its kind in Canada.

The Government of British Columbia has provided the centre with $180,000 in grants towards the creation of the centre.

“Our government is keenly aware of the challenges involved in running a large-scale network infrastructure, which is why we support research in cyber-security, privacy and IT systems,” says Stephanie Cadieux, Minister of Labour, Citizens’ Services and Open Government. “We are proud to have provided the seed funding for ASPIRe as it will help our province continue to be a leader in the development of real-world solutions to today’s tough privacy and security issues.”

Dr. Stephen Neville is a UVic electrical and computer engineering professor and ASPIRe’s director. “Canada, as with all modern societies, has come to heavily depend on larger-scale information systems for many services including social networking, banking, health care systems and critical infrastructure systems,” he explains. “With our increased reliance on these systems has come a growing expectation that they’ll perform as promised, be reasonably secure and protect our private information. These issues are complex and require collaborative efforts across academia, industry and government to address.”

The ASPIRe Centre has direct collaborations with the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada’s (NSERC) Internetworked Systems Security Network (ISSNet) Strategic Network—Canada’s national cyber-security focused research network, in which Dr. Neville is also a founding member.

“The Government of British Columbia has been particularly prescient in understanding the importance and complexity of these issues and has provided the opportunity to create the ASPIRe Centre as a framework to bring together academic researchers, industry partners, and government collaborators,” says Dr. Howard Brunt, UVic’s vice-president research. “As a result, improvements can be made to the real-world systems and processes upon which we, as Canadians, increasingly depend. ASPIRe will also be instrumental in helping to produce the highly skilled graduates in these areas that Canadian industry and governments are actively seeking.”

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Media contacts

Stephen Neville (Engineering) at

Maria Lironi (UVic Communications) at 250-721-6139 or

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Keywords: new, uvic, centre, focuses, cyber, security, privacy

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