Schools with an Outstanding Cybersecurity Engineering Department & Professors

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Carnegie Mellon University - CyLab, Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy

Carnegie Mellon is a private research university founded in 1900 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, known as a hub of innovation. The U.S. News & World Report lists Carnegie Mellon as the top school for many different disciplines, including computer science, computer engineering, information and technology management, time-based new media, and artificial intelligence.

CMU offers nine masters and three doctoral programs related to information networking, information security, and information technology. The university has also been recognized as a National Center of Academic Excellence in three areas of information assurance—cyber defense education, cyber defense education, and cyber operations—and CMU's CyLab Security & Privacy Institute draws talent from a variety of colleges and departments across multiple disciplines.

Dr. Lorrie Cranor is the Bosch distinguished professor in security and privacy technologies and the FORE systems professor of computer science, engineering, and public policy. She is also director of the CyLab Security and Privacy Institute and co-director of the MSIT-privacy engineering master’s program.

Dr. Cranor teaches usable privacy and security and a seminar course on current topics in privacy. Her current research focuses on usable privacy and security, technology, and public policy. In addition to her scholarly work, academic advising, and other leadership activities, Dr. Cranor consults with nonprofit organizations and companies and has served as an expert witness in cases dealing with the ethics of internet policy laws related to children, such as the ACLU's challenge to the 1998 Children's Online Protection Act. During a leave of absence from CMU, Dr. Cranor was the chief technologist at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. She is also a co-founder of the security awareness training company, Wombat Security Technologies.

Dr. Cranor has a doctor of science in engineering and policy, a master of science in computer science, a master of science in technology and human affairs, and a bachelor of science in engineering and public policy—all from Washington University.

Ramayya Krishnan is dean of the Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy and the William W. and Ruth F. Cooper professor of management science and information systems at CMU.

He founded the information systems management program and led the development of several research centers, such as the Risk and Regulatory Services Innovation Center, Metro21 Smart Cities Institute, and Traffic21. Dr. Krishnan also served as dean of the School of Information Systems at Singapore Management University for six years, the creation of which was realized through a partnership between Carnegie Mellon and the government of Singapore. His current research interests center around consumer and social behavior in digitally instrumented environments. In addition to numerous other awards and accolades, Dr. Krishnan is the recipient of the 2018 Bright Internet Award.

Dr. Krishnan has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s degree in industrial engineering and operations research from the Indian Institute of Technology. He obtained his doctor of philosophy (PhD) in management science and information systems from the University of Texas at Austin.

Dr. Diana Marculescu is the distinguished David Edward Schramm professor of electrical engineering and the founding director of the Center for Faculty Success which, in collaboration with Google researchers and computer science faculty, has developed the "Bias Busters" program to increase awareness and lessen the effects of bias at CMU and beyond.

Dr. Marculescu researches and teaches in the areas of energy-aware and sustainable computing; she has been the primary or co-investigator on major research efforts, which have received more than $10 million in funding. She has an enormous body of published scholarly writing with six designations for best paper. Dr. Marculescu was the recipient of the prestigious junior faculty award, the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award, and more recently, the Barbara Lazarus Award for outstanding mentoring of graduate students and junior faculty. She is also the recipient of the Inspiring Women in STEM Award from Insight into Diversity and the IEEE CEDA Distinguished Service Award.

Dr. Marculescu has a PhD in computer engineering from the University of Southern California, and a master's in computer science from the Polytechnic Institute of Bucharest in Romania.


Dr. Vyas Sekar teaches network security, an introduction to computer security, and special topics as an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at CMU.

He has published close to 100 academic articles in his young career, several of which have been selected as best papers. Professor Sekar's research interests include networking, security, and systems, focusing on cloud security, IoT security, and reconfigurable data centers, among others. In addition to his academic and scholarly work, Dr. Sekar currently serves as an advisor to over a dozen students and on the NSDI symposium for Security and Privacy. Dr. Sekar holds the Angel Jordan Early Career Professorship and has been honored with the NSF Career Award, the ACM SIGCOMM Rising Star Award, and the Eta Kappa Nu Excellence in Teaching Award.

Dr. Sekar has a bachelor of technology in computer science from the Indian Institute of Technology and a PhD in the same subject from Carnegie Mellon University.

Dr. Douglas Sicker is a professor at CMU as well as the interim director of Cylab and the Lord Endowed Chair of Engineering. In addition to his academic appointments and leadership roles, Dr. Sicker is the executive director of the Broadband Internet Technical Advisory Group (BITANG) and chief strategist at CMMB Vision.

His past roles include director of the interdisciplinary telecommunications program at the University of Colorado at Boulder, chair of the Network Reliability and Interoperability Council steering committee, and advisor to the National Institute of Justice and the Technical Advisory Council of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). In addition to his numerous leadership roles, Dr. Sicker has an extensive record of scholarly publications to his credit and a robust research program with support from organizations such as the NSF. His areas of research interest combine network technology and public policy, which Dr. Sicker describes as "rich in technical challenges and socially significant research topics" including security and privacy, broadband networking, network policy, and dynamic spectrum access.

Dr. Sicker has a PhD, a master of science, and a bachelor's degree from the University of Pittsburgh.

Dr. Peter Steenkiste is a professor of computer science and electrical and computer engineering. He teaches computer networks and wireless networks and applications at CMU. Dr. Steenskiste also leads the eXpressive Internet Architecture (XIA) project, which explores topics such as network diagnostics, services, management, and security transport protocols.

His research is focused in the area of networks and distributed computing; his current projects deal with XIA and vehicular wireless networking. Dr. Steenkiste has published extensively on topics related to wireless computing and Aura, Libra, Darwin, Remulac, and Credit Net. He has degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Gent, Belgium and Stanford University.

Dr. Steenkiste has a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Ghent University and a joint master of science and PhD in the same subject from Stanford University.

Boston University - Hariri Institute for Computing, Department of Computer Science

The Hariri Institute for Computing is a center devoted to computational and data-driven research and training. The organization is dedicated to the betterment of society, per Boston University's mission statement and its goal is two-fold: to promote discovery and innovation with computational and data-driven methods, and to advance computing sciences through inspiration from the arts, engineering, and health and management sciences.

The Hariri Institute is also the home of the Center for Reliable Information Systems and Cyber Security (RISCS), which coordinates research and training in information security and system reliability from disciplines such as engineering, economics, secure computations, law, and ethics. The BU Security Group is supported by RISCS and researches cryptology and network security through the Department of Computer Science.

Notably, the National Center of Academic Excellence has recognized these initiatives for their excellence in information assurance education, and the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have recognized them for their excellence in research.

Dr. Azer Bestavros is the former chair of the BU computer science department and the founding director of the BU Hariri Institute for Computing. He is also the William Fairfield Warren distinguished professor of computer science.

Dr. Bestavros led one of the Institute's most notable projects: the Open Cloud Exchange project, which was designed to create a model for public clouds and cloud marketplaces. He researches networking and distributed systems; his many contributions to the industry include pioneering the Web push content distribution model and his work on safe certification of networked systems and software. Dr. Bestavros also serves on the board of the Cloud Computing Caucus, a nonprofit dedicated to raising awareness on cloud computing issues. He holds a doctoral degree from Harvard University.

Dr. Bestavros obtained his PhD in computer science from Harvard University.

Dr. Ran Canetti is a professor of computer science at BU and the associate director of the school's Center for Reliable Information Systems & Cyber Security. He teaches cryptography and is the co-chair of the Crypto Forum Research Group at the Internet Research Task Force. He is also head of the Check Point Institute of Information Security.

Dr. Canetti's research focuses on network and system security, distributed algorithms and systems, and the foundations of cryptography. He has been the associate editor of the Journal of Cryptography since 2002 and on the editorial board of Information and Computation since 2007. Dr. Canetti is a former faculty member of Tel Aviv University and worked as a visiting scientist in the computer science and artificial intelligence laboratory at MIT from 2004 to 2008.

He earned his PhD from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, as well as his master of science and dual bachelor's degree in physics and computer science from the Technion in Israel.

Dr. Sharon Goldberg is an associate professor of computer science and a network security researcher. Her work combines theory and networking to understand and address the challenges of new security technologies.

Dr. Goldberg's professional experience includes positions at Microsoft Research-New England, Bell Canada, Hydro One Networks, and IBM's crypto group. She has also been a member of the FCC and Internet Engineering Task Force working groups. She recently co-founded a private enterprise, Arwen, a blockchain cryptocurrency trading company. Dr. Goldberg is a Sloan Research and Hariri Faculty Fellow in the Department of Computer Science at BU, where she teaches courses in network security and probability in computing.

Dr. Goldberg completed her PhD and her master's in electrical engineering at Princeton University. She also has a bachelor of engineering from the University of Toronto.

As a professor of computer science, Dr. Leonid Reyzin teaches the fundamentals of cryptography. His research focus is also based in this area to help secure Internet infrastructure.

Dr. Reyzin has consulted for CoreStreet, Peppercoin, Microsoft, and RSA Laboratories. He has been on the editorial board of Information and Computation since 2012, served as the associate chair of the computer science department (also since 2012), and has been the faculty advisor for the BU ACM/BUILDS student group since 2011. He is a member of the BU Security Group along with other BU security experts.

Dr. Reyzin completed his bachelor's degree at Harvard University and his master's and PhD at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)—all in computer science.


Professor of computer science Dr. Adam Smith researches data privacy and cryptography, with a particular focus on their relationship to machine learning, information theory, quantum computing, and statistics. He teaches privacy in machine learning and statistical inference along with algorithms, data privacy, and data analysis.

Dr. Smith has been honored with the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and the Theory of Cryptography Test of Time Award. Before his appointment at BU in 2017, Adam Smith was a faculty member in the Department of Computer Science at Pennsylvania State University for ten years, where he was honored with the 2015 Faculty Teaching Award and the Joel and Ruth Spira Award for Teaching Excellence.

Dr. Smith has a PhD and master's degree in computer science from MIT, as well as a joint bachelor's degree in mathematics and computer science from McGill University in Canada.

Dartmouth College - DartNets Lab, The Institute for Security, Technology and Society

Dartmouth College is located along the Connecticut River in the Upper Valley of rural Hanover, New Hampshire. A part of the Ivy League established in 1769, the college is celebrating its 250th anniversary this year. Mohegan Indian Samson Occom was one of the first students and played an indispensable role in raising funds for the founding of Dartmouth, which was established as a school for the education of Native Americans. Today, there are more Native graduates from Dartmouth than all other Ivy League schools combined.

Like the previous two universities profiled, Dartmouth's College Institute for Security, Technology, and Society (ISTS) has earned designation as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research by the National Security Agency and U.S. Department of Homeland Security. With the broad mission of advancing information security and privacy throughout society, the ISTS explores how information technology is related to political influences, socio-economic forces, and cultural values.

Dr. Andrew T. Campbell is a professor of computer science and a co-director of the Dartmouth Networking and Ubiquitous Systems Laboratory (DartNets Lab), a research lab that explores the applications, systems, and networking of smart device systems.

Before joining the Dartmouth faculty, Dr. Campbell was a tenured associate professor of electrical engineering at Columbia University, where he researched wireless networks. Before that, he worked in the software industry developing operating systems and wireless packet networks. Dr. Campbell's current research focuses on "understanding human development in the wild" through the development of computational methods for smartphones and wearables. He is interested in the use of mobile phones in mental health sensing and prediction. Dr. Campbell is the recipient of the 2019 ACM SIGMOBILE Test of Time Paper Award for his publication "CenceMe." He also presented on the future of wellbeing with ubiquitous sensing at South by Southwest (SWXW) this year.

Dr. Campbell received his PhD in computer science from Lancaster University in England.


Dr. David Kotz is the distinguished Champion International Professor of computer science and the director of the Core on Emerging Technologies and Data Analytics at the Center for Technology and Behavioral Health.

He currently teaches software design and implementation and is the principal investigator of three research projects. He served as the executive director of the Dartmouth Institute for Security Technology Studies (ISTS) and researches wireless networks, security and privacy, and pervasive computing for healthcare. Dr. Kotz is the author of more than 200 scholarly articles, has mentored close to 100 graduate students, and has garnered over $67 million in research funding throughout his academic career. David Kotz was a Fulbright Fellow in India in 2008.

Dr. Kotz has a PhD and master's in computer science from Duke University and a dual bachelor's degree in computer science and physics from Dartmouth.

Dr. Sean Smith is a professor of computer science and the principal investigator of the Dartmouth Trust Lab. His courses in computer architecture, applied cryptography, and advanced operating systems are often rated as favorites among graduating students.

Dr. Smith's industry experience includes working on postal meter fraud for the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and designing security architecture at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center. Professor Smith has been granted over a dozen patents and taught in Dartmouth's first integrated living/learning community and course in the summer of 2015: “Risks of the Internet of Things to Society (RIOTS).” He has advised over three dozen students and senior honors theses, and he and his students have won several "Best Paper" awards.

Dr. Smith holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Princeton and a master's and PhD in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University.


To be selected for inclusion in our list of influential cybersecurity engineering professors, we used the following criteria:

  • University Affiliation: The professors are associated with a cybersecurity engineering program at an accredited university in the U.S. and actively teaching.
  • Publication: They have published widely in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Institutional & Peer Recognition: They have been recognized by their peers and their employers as being among the best in their field through teaching awards, special recognition for their scholarly works, and notable grants and research funding.
  • Professional Commitment: They have also contributed to the field in other ways. Some have been selected to be program directors or faculty deans, while others have become leaders of professional organizations, founders of private businesses, or industry consultants.

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