Building on a big presence from the federal government’s cybersecurity force, a state is looking to expand commercial research and training activities that can become a force in the region.
That sentiment often describes Maryland, where Fort Meade has long been the home of U.S. Cyber Command within National Security Agency (NSA), along with plenty of cyber talent. But over the last year, it’s also become a characterization of Georgia.
In 2020, Fort Gordon in Augusta, Georgia, will become the headquarters of the U.S. Army’s Cyber Command. Investment from the state has followed, with a $100 million facility called Georgia Cyber Center emerging as one of the most visible signs of those plans.
Business and economic development leaders in the two areas looked to spark connections this week as a delegation from Georgia visited Maryland for a tour hosted by Anne Arundel Economic Development Corporation (AACED). The group included about a dozen leaders from state departments, universities and businesses.
The two-day visit provided a chance to compare notes and potentially open up business opportunities, said AAEDC Business Development Associate Sarah Horta. The events included a tour at the NSA and DreamPort, the Columbia-based center bringing business, government and academic leaders together where U.S. Cyber Command is looking to create new technology. The delegation also visited cyber company Bridges in Hanover, where they took part in a panel hosted by Cybersecurity Association of Maryland, Inc.
Construction was also on the agenda, as Whiting-Turner and Fort Meade Alliance discussed building a Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF), required for classified information. There was talk of building businesses across the two areas, too: One company, Ionic Security, already has offices in Georgia as well as Annapolis, Horta said.
AAEDC is partnering with @buymdcyber & sponsor @TowerFCU today to offer “Cybersecurity Insights From the State of Georgia” here at #ArundelBiz @Bridges_Cyber. The panel includes members of the Georgia delegation visiting! pic.twitter.com/VUCNeDh3x2
— AA Econ. Dev. Corp. (@AAEDC) February 19, 2019
The trip was a visit returned, of sorts, as last year a group from Maryland went to Georgia. There are opportunities to learn from each other on both sides.
“From our perspective the more we can bring each other together, especially with things coming out of cyber command, then it’s going to benefit us as a whole,” Horta said.-30-