Happy 20th, REN-ISAC
In 2023, the Research & Education Information Sharing & Analysis Center (REN-ISAC) will celebrate 20 years as the ISAC for higher education. REN-ISAC’s mission has always been to make threat intelligence, mitigation options, and vulnerability alerts available to the information security professionals we serve. Working in concert with national and international cybersecurity partners, such as the FBI, CISA, Internet2, EDUCAUSE, and many others, the REN-ISAC plays a pivotal role in protecting and enhancing cybersecurity in higher education and research in the US, Canada, the UK, Australia, and New Zealand.
REN-ISAC began with a small but dedicated band of 14 higher ed institutions in 2003. Today, we have grown to include 700 institutions and over 3000 member representatives. Our members are vital to REN-ISAC’s success. Not only do they bring a breadth and depth of professional knowledge, but they also generously share their time and expertise through advice, support, webinars, and threat intelligence.
As one of many Information Sharing and Analysis Centers (ISACs) serving critical infrastructure owners and operators, the REN-ISAC is part of the National Council of ISACS (NCI). ISACs gather, evaluate, and communicate actionable threat information to their members, as well as tools for risk mitigation and resiliency. They have a broad reach across their sectors, disseminating essential information and maintaining sector-wide situational awareness.
As part of the NCI, the REN-ISAC has worked to protect the facilities, staff, and populations we serve. Over the decades, the threat landscape for higher education has continued to evolve. Where physical threats were once paramount, cyberthreats have become a major and comparable concern. Ransomware, phishing, data protection, and vulnerability management impact the day-to-day operations and of colleges, universities, and research centers. Through it all, the REN-ISAC has been here for the higher ed sector.