Protecting privacy in the tech era

Joining a team already conducting research on cyber security in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering is Frederick R. Chang, the new Bobby B. Lyle Endowed Centennial Distinguished Chair in Cyber Security. Chang, whose career credentials include leadership positions in academia, business and government, will develop a multidisciplinary program aimed at tackling today’s most pressing cyber challenges.

Chang says he enjoys working toward something bigger than himself – a philosophy that carries over from his service at the National Security Agency and that he shares with SMU students. “There are some very difficult problems that the nation faces in cyber security,” he says. “I am confident that SMU, working with different partners, can make a difference at the national level.”

Chang will add to the research that Computer Science and Engineering faculty members Suku Nair, Mitch Thornton and Tyler Moore are conducting in network security. “What is required today is cyber security research that incorporates innovative thinking with consideration of people, processes and technology,” he says.

Chang’s Centennial Distinguished Chair is made possible by a financial commitment from SMU trustee and longtime benefactor Bobby B. Lyle ’67, for whom SMU’s engineering school is named. “Research will be significant under Dr. Chang’s leadership, but he also intends to teach courses that make information about cyber science and security accessible to students of all disciplines,” Lyle says. “That’s a tremendous gift, as understanding the rules in cyberspace becomes more important in our daily lives.”

Reflecting a trend toward greater interdisciplinary collaboration, Fred Chang is also a senior fellow in the John Goodwin Tower Center for Political Studies.

Originally appeared in the Fall 2013 issue of SMU Magazine.