The need for educational training cybersecurity experts is growing rapidly. In 2019, the (ISC)² Cybersecurity Workforce Study estimated there are 291,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in Europe: an amount that has almost doubled since 2018. To address this gap, we need to educate new specialists and provide tools that would allow specialists to fulfil their work tasks efficiently.
To support cybersecurity education, testing, and certification, we have delivered Cyber Sandbox Creator – a versatile tool for creating lightweight virtual labs. Cyber Sandbox Creator builds isolated lab environments for cybersecurity training, experimentation, or testing based on user input.
The lab environments can be then distributed to individuals and small and medium organisations. Key benefits of the created labs are:
- Lightweight design. The lab can be hosted on a standard PC or laptop and used with zero additional costs. The only limit is the available system resources of the host PC.
- The lab can be hosted at any standard hosting operating system: Windows, Linux, and Mac OSX.
- The lab uses proven and open-source components and best practices.
We have tested the lab at Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic, to prepare and configure custom environments for cybersecurity training of our students. Students were provided with the created lab and completed their tasks there or worked on their thesis projects. We have recently provided Cyber Sandbox Creator to instructors at Slovak Technical University in Bratislava, who will follow this approach.
Another use case is now being tested by a medium-sized company from the Czech Republic, which simulates its industrial control system in the lab environment created with Cyber Sandbox Creator.
Cyber Sandbox Creator uses the same format for the definition of a virtual environment (sandbox) as KYPO Cyber Range Platform. That means users can save time and costs for developing and testing their sandboxes locally at their computers before deploying them to a fully-fledged cyber range platform. We also piloted this use case and thus demonstrated a successful operational federation of Cyber Sandbox Creator and KYPO Cyber Range.
We have released the first prototype of Cyber Sandbox Creator as open source and look for early adopters from other institutions who would like to try their use cases and provide feedback. If you are interested, check out our public project repository and e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.