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Fostering Growth in Professional Cyber Incident Management


The SEI's CERT Coordination Center (CERT/CC) was born from a newfound national concern about malicious attacks on communications networks. Graduate student Robert Morris jarred the network-connected world from ambivalence regarding cybersecurity on November 2, 1988, by releasing a worm that brought the nascent Internet to its knees.

In the aftermath of the Morris Worm attack, DARPA asked the SEI to establish a computer emergency response team, which has come to be known as the CERT/CC. As a neutral third party, the CERT/CC reports vulnerabilities to vendors without revealing the identity of the reporter. This role allows the CERT/CC to work with competing vendors whose products contain the same vulnerability, free of conflicts of interest.

Since its formation, the CERT/CC has facilitated the mitigation of vulnerabilities and disseminated information through the publication of Vulnerability Notes, which include summaries, technical details, remediation information, and lists of affected vendors. The CERT/CC maintains a knowledgebase that includes a publicly available Vulnerability Notes Database.

In addition, the CERT/CC has been instrumental in building a network of more than 50 national computer security incident response teams (CSIRTs) using tools and training that help managers, project leaders, CSIRT staff, and computer forensic professionals.

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