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Training Students to Intercept & Fend Off Cyberattacks

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Daniel Riano, a third-semester Cybersecurity student at TSTC, watches a video introduction about networking during a recent lab session. (Photo courtesy of TSTC.)
Daniel Riano, a third-semester Cybersecurity student at TSTC, watches a video introduction about networking during a recent lab session. (Photo courtesy of TSTC.)
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HARLINGEN, Texas – Just as ancient castles had to be protected against invaders, modern computer networks are vulnerable to cyberattacks.

That is where Texas State Technical College’s Cybersecurity program comes in.

Alejandro Alcoser is a Cybersecurity instructor at TSTC’s Harlingen campus. He said the program can prepare students for a rewarding career.

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“Beginner students will take courses such as Fundamentals of Networking Technologies, Introduction to Digital Forensics, and Personal Computer Hardware,” he said. “Advanced students will take courses such as Information Technology Security, Intrusion Detection, and Security Assessment and Auditing.”

Alcoser added that cybersecurity technology has become more complex.

“There are more ways for a company to get hacked,” he said. “Now companies look to hire a skilled professional with the knowledge, skills and experience in a specific information technology area to mitigate a cyberattack.”

Alcoser cited an example of a cyberattack that led to better safeguards.

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“A baby monitor was hacked because it didn’t have any security features,” he said. “That gave a hacker access to look at the inside of somebody’s home. Now new baby monitor models have enhanced security capabilities.”

Daniel Riano, of Harlingen, is studying for a certificate of completion in Cybersecurity.

“We’re going to learn how to set up and configure internet protocol,” he said. “I’m curious to know how it coincides with networking operating systems.”

TSTC offers an Associate of Applied Science degree and two certificates of completion in Cybersecurity, and an advanced technology certificate in Digital Forensics Specialist.

According to onetonline.org, digital forensics analysts in Texas can earn a median salary of $83,340 a year. The website projected that there would be a 20% increase in such jobs in the state from 2020 to 2030.

For more information about TSTC, visit tstc.edu.

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