Skip to main content

Why Alternatives to Traditional Cyber Training Are Needed Immediately

By Angela Shugarts • Posted over 2 years ago

Tag:
Category:
Blog

Are you looking for a more effective, cost-conscious cyber training tool that

Cyber training has evolved over the years but not at pace with the rapid persistence of cybercrime. Cyberattacks impact businesses of all sizes and it’s only a matter of time before your business is next in line. Traditional cyber training has been comprised of individuals sitting in a classroom environment, off-site, reading static materials, listening to lectures, and if you’re lucky, performing step-by-step, prescriptive tasks to “upskill” and “learn.” Unfortunately, this model isn’t working anymore. Learners are not retaining concepts and are disengaged from the learning process. This means by the time they make it back to your company to defend your networks,

So, what cyber training alternatives are available for building competency and skill among professionals? More importantly, why do you need a better way to train professionals? We hope this blog helps answer these questions.

Cyber Range Training

Cyber ranges provide trainees with simulated (highly scalable, small number of servers) or emulated (high fidelity testing using real computers, OS, and application) environments to practice skills such as defending networks, hardening critical infrastructure (ICS/SCADA) and responding to attacks. They simulate realistic technical settings for professionals to practice network configurations and detect abnormalities and anomalies in computer systems. While simulated ranges are considered more affordable than emulated ranges, several academic papers question whether test results from a simulation reflect a cyber pro’s workplace reality .

Traditional Cyber Security Training

Courses can be taken in a classroom setting from certified instructors (like a SANS course), self-paced over the Internet, or in mentored settings in cities around the world. Several organizations offer online classes too, for professionals looking to hone their skills in their specific work role (e.g. incident response analyst, ethical hacker). Online or in-classroom training environments are almost exclusively built to cater to offensive-type cyber security practices and are highly prescriptive when it comes to the learning and the process for submitting “answers”/ scoring.

However, as cyber security proves to be largely a “learn by doing” skillset, where outside-of-the-box thinking, real-world, high fidelity virtual environments, and on-going training are crucially important, attendees of traditional course trainings are often left searching for more cross-disciplined opportunities to hone their craft over the long term. Nevertheless, online trainings prove

Gamified, Cyber Range, Cloud-Based Training

It wouldn’t be our blog if we didn’t mention

Our goal is to create a learning experience that is engaging, immersive, fun, and challenges trainee thinking in ways most authentic to cyber scenarios they’d experience in their actual jobs.

Project Ares was built with an active-learning approach to teaching, which studies show

Check out the comparison table below for details on the differences between traditional training models and what Project Ares delivers.

Traditional Training (classroom and online delivery of lectured based material) Project Ares (immersive environment for hands on, experiential learning) Curriculum Design

  • Instructors are generally experts in their field and exceptional classroom facilitators.

  • Often hired to develop a specific course.

  • It can take up to a year to build a course and it might be used for as long as 5 years, with updates.

  • Instructors are challenged to keep pace with evolving threats and to update course material frequently enough to reflect today’s attack surface in real time.

  • It is taught the same way every time.

Curriculum Design

  • Cyber subject matter experts partner with instructional design specialists to reengineer real-world threat scenarios into immersive, learning-based exercises.

  • An in-game advisor serves as a resource for players to guide them through activities, minimizing the need for physical instructors and subsequent overhead.

  • Project Ares is drawn from real-world threats and attacks, so content is always relevant and updated to meet user’s needs.

Learning Delivery

  • Courses are often concept-specific going deep on a narrow subject. And it can take multiple courses to cover a whole subject area.

  • Students take the whole course or watch the whole video – for example, if a student knows 70%, they sit through that to get to the 30% that is new to them.

  • On Demand materials are available for reference (sometimes for an additional fee) and are helpful for review of complex concepts. But this does not help student put the concepts into practice.

  • Most courses teach offensive concepts….from the viewpoint that it is easier to teach how to break the network and then assumes that students will figure out how to ‘re-engineer’ defense. This approach can build a deep foundational understanding of concepts but it is not tempered by practical ‘application’ until students are back home facing real defensive challenges.

Learning Delivery

  • Wherever a user is in his/her cyber security career path, Project Ares meets them at their level and provides a curriculum pathway.

  • From skills to strategy: Students / Players can use the Project Ares platform to refresh skills, learn new skills, test their capabilities on their own and, most critically, collaborate with teammates to combine techniques and critical thinking to successfully reach the end of a mission.

  • It takes a village to defend a network, sensitive data, executive leaders, finances, and an enterprises reputation: This approach teaches and enables experience of the many and multiple skills and job roles that come together in the real-world to detect and respond to threats and attacks….

  • Project Ares creates challenging environments that demand the kind of problem solving and strategic thinking necessary to create an effective and evolving defensive posture

  • Project Ares Battle Rooms and Missions present real-world problems that need to be solved, not just answered. It is a higher-level learning approach.

If you want to learn more about Project Ares and how it stacks up to other training options out there, watch our on-demand webinar

Photo by

Request a demo

Get a look inside Project Ares

Related posts:

Experiential Learning Challenges and Solutions
White project ares logo

Project Ares is designed and built by Circadence®.

Project Ares

Follow us

Subscribe to our newsletter