'Birthplace of a new future': First building of Georgia Cyber Center opens

(Georgia Cyber Center)

Governor Nathan Deal attended the opening of the new building at the Georgia Cyber Center Wednesday.

The Hull McKnight Building is a first-of-its-kind, collaborative cybersecurity center in Augusta. The Georgia Cyber Center cost $100 million, making it the "single largest investment in a cybersecurity facility by a state government to date."

The center hopes to strengthen the state's position as a national leader in the field.

Related: Cyber security program looks to help fill 11,000 security jobs in Georgia

“Georgia is now the nation’s cybersecurity capital and the Georgia Cyber Center’s Hull McKnight Building will serve as the birthplace of a new future for our state,” said Deal. “We know that there are very clear and present vulnerabilities when it comes to the cybersecurity of individuals, businesses and critical public organizations. Today, there are roughly 300,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in this country, with expected growth of 20 percent in this sector in the next decade alone. As cybercriminals constantly evolve their tactics, we have to evolve constantly as well to remain one step ahead of them.

“I appreciate the efforts of our federal, state, local and private-sector partners who have played a role in the establishment of the Georgia Cyber Center, a resource unlike any other in the nation. By investing in cybersecurity resources to remain on the forefront of one of the most pressing issues of our time, we are working to make Georgia not only the No. 1 state in which to do business, but also the safest and most secure state for business.”

Some highlights about the new building are as follows:

  • The Georgia Cyber Range will be available to students, industry and government professionals for education and training, product development, offensive and defensive competition and more.
  • The GBI’s newly created Cyber Crime Unit will be housed in the building, allowing law enforcement professionals throughout the state to access the GBI’s expertise in digital forensics.
  • Augusta University and Augusta Technical College will collaborate in a new partnership that places a USG school alongside a TCSG school to share classes and resources.
  • theClubhou.se, an Augusta-based nonprofit organization, will manage an incubator and accelerator program to foster innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Demonstration space will highlight cyber research taking place at USG institutions, including basic and applied research at Augusta University.
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