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The US Department of Homeland Security is to get together with Carnegie Mellon University’s CERT (Computer Emergency Response Team) Coordination Center.

It will bring together national and international efforts to prevent cyber attacks, protect systems, and respond to the effects of cyber attacks across the internet.

‘Our nation’s growing use of the internet for safety-critical applications as well as business transactions, coupled with the increased sophistication and speed of cyber-attacks increases the risk that cyber-attacks can cause significant damage in short periods of time’ said Richard Pethia, director of CERT/CC, in a statement.

Carnegie Mellon University president Jared Cohon added in a statement: ‘Carnegie Mellon is proud and pleased to have this opportunity to work with the Department of Homeland Security. We are committed to maintaining our longstanding leadership in cyber security and to building additional strength in this critical area.’

US-CERT will begin as a partnership between the National Cyber Security Division (NCSD) within DHS and Carnegie Mellon’s CERT/CC. It is expected that it will grow to include other partnerships with private-sector security vendors and domestic and international organisations.

Carnegie Mellon’s CERT/CC was formed in November 1988 within the Software Engineering Institute by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency after an internet worm brought 10% of internet-connected systems to a halt.

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