The Institute for Cyber Security was created at UTSA in June 2007 through a competitive $3.5 million grant from the Texas Emerging Technology Fund. Prof. Ravi Sandhu, a world-renowned cyber-security researcher, scholar, educator and entrepreneur, was invited to join UTSA as the Founding Executive Director as a condition of the funding. UTSA awarded a $1.0 million Lutcher Brown Endowed Chair to Prof. Sandhu. The STARS program of the University of Texas System subsequently awarded a $1.0 million grant to Prof. Sandhu for furthering the Institute’s mission.
Cyber security was identified as an area of strategic importance for UTSA and for San Antonio in 2000. The Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security was established at UTSA in 2001. Cyber-security research and education activities were pursued in the Colleges of Science, Engineering and Business. Exercises, training and competition activities were pursued in the Center. A vision for the Institute for Cyber Security was articulated in 2005 with the goal of strengthening and synergizing the already substantial cyber security activities and expertise across UTSA, and particularly to develop a world-leading research reputation in cyber security. A winning proposal to establish the Institute was submitted to the Texas Emerging Technology Fund, leading to founding of the Institute and invitation of Prof. Sandhu to lead it as a condition of the funding. San Antonio business, government and academic leaders were crucial to this process with special acknowledgement of the leadership of David Spencer. The Institute reports to the Dean of the College of Science.