As the number of cybersecurity threats to our nation’s commercial and government organizations increase, there is a critical need to implement new and effective information sharing tools. To address this challenge, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program awarded $1 million to California-based small business InferLink Corporation to develop a collaborative and effective peer-to-peer tool for sharing cybersecurity information and lessons learned.
“Science cannot exist in a vacuum and it is only by collaborating with our peers that we are able to bring valuable insights and best practices to the table,” said William N. Bryan, DHS Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Under Secretary for Science and Technology. “This technology will enable companies and organizations to leverage related experiences from one another and better understand and manage cybersecurity risks.”
The DHS SBIR Program, administered by the DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T), awarded the Phase II contract to InferLink based on successful demonstration of feasibility in Phase I for their Cybersecurity Peer-to-Peer Knowledge/Lessons Learned Tool. In Phase II, InferLink will further develop a secure community platform for cyber knowledge sharing and collaboration.
“Cybersecurity professionals tend to be reluctant to share data because of the sensitive nature of the information. In the wrong hands, this information can be used for malicious purposes instead of mitigating risk,” said Ann Cox, DHS S&T SBIR Topic Manager. “This tool will provide a platform for creating trusted groups of individuals who can freely share information in a secure environment. This means if one organization has a way to prevent or mitigate activities from malicious actors online, that information will be available to others and can be immediately implemented, instead of re-inventing solutions, which will multiply the value of the scarce human resources available in cybersecurity.”
At the completion of the 24-month Phase II contract, SBIR awardees will have developed a prototype to facilitate the pursuit of Phase III funding. For Phase III, SBIR performers seek to secure funding from private or a non-SBIR government source and pursue technology commercialization resulting from their Phase I and II efforts.