Providing an Experiential Cybersecurity Learning Experience through Mobile Security Labs

Abstract

The reality of today’s computing landscape already suffers from a shortage of cybersecurity professionals, and this gap only expected to grow. We need to generate interest in this STEM topic early in our student’s careers and provide teachers the resources they need to succeed in addressing this gap. To address this shortfall we present Practical LAbs in Security for Mobile Applications (PLASMA), a public set of educational security labs to enable instruction in creation of secure Android apps. These labs include example vulnerable applications, information about each vulnerability, steps for how to repair the vulnerabilities, and information about how to confirm that the vulnerability has been properly repaired. Our goal is for instructors to use these activities in their mobile, security, and general computing courses ranging from secondary school to university settings. Another goal of this project is to foster interest in security and computing through demonstrating its importance. Initial feedback demonstrates the labs’ positive effects in enhancing student interest in cybersecurity and acclaim from instructors. All project activities may be found on the project website: http://www.TeachingMobileSecurity.com

Publication
Proceedings of the 1st International Workshop on Security Awareness from Design to Deployment