$2.3 Million Gift From McAfee Fortifies RIT’s Information Security

New hardware and software will also enhance academic and research programs

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McAfee has donated $2.3 million in security hardware and software to enhance Rochester Institute of Technology’s information security, academic and research programs. The gift will serve as a core security component of RIT’s new data center, enhance the security of endpoints—such as desktops, laptops and mobile devices—and create the McAfee Interlock Lab within RIT’s B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences.

RIT’s new data center, which will be located in Institute Hall and operational in spring 2013, will provide much-needed computing capacity and services for the RIT community, such as high-speed networking and server management. By consolidating RIT’s data and computing services into an air-cooled facility leveraging the latest in processing, storage, virtualization and security technology, RIT will improve energy-efficiency, fortify security and advance computing capacity and capabilities.

“This is a mutually beneficial and innovative partnership that significantly enhances RIT’s information security posture while providing RIT the opportunity to serve as a reference architecture for McAfee in the higher education market,” says Jonathan Maurer, RIT Information Security Officer and adjunct professor of enterprise security. “McAfee’s solution will allow RIT to holistically understand its information security risks.”

The McAfee gift allows the data center’s security to be managed more efficiently, while offering a wider breadth of security options and strategies. McAfee’s “single pane of glass approach,” or the idea of monitoring crucial security information from one central interface, provides an integrated, safe and energy-efficient defense.

“McAfee is proud of its longstanding partnership with RIT, a leader in computing education and applied research,” says Michael DeCesare, co-president, McAfee. “This gift will reinforce RIT’s information security while providing a showcase for our solutions and best practices in higher education.”

The gift also helps establish the McAfee Interlock Lab—a smaller version of the data center’s security system—within the Golisano College. The lab will support the teaching, learning and research in many critical areas, including mobile, endpoint, server, database and network security.

“The hands-on experience that our students will get using McAfee’s leading-edge integrated security tools will give them an advantage as they enter this demanding and growing job field,” says Andrew Sears, dean of the B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences.

The partnership will also create several McAfee cooperative education opportunities, allowing students within the computing college to work on RIT’s information security, including the data center, as paid McAfee employees.

“This longstanding partnership aligns with RIT’s commitment to the highest security standards and energy efficient initiatives,” RIT President Bill Destler says. “I am pleased that students will also benefit from McAfee’s generosity, as they prepare for careers in computing security.”