Formal qualifications in Informatics and Computer Science

ICS has a very high profile that permeates through the various modules offered by the ACSSE. From the first year, ICS aspects are emphasised, with growing importance and emphasis in following years.

Basic information security is taught at undergraduate level modules to develop the student’s awareness and attitude towards ICS. In first year, Computer Science 1A students are introduced to basic encryption algorithms as part of their discussions on algorithms. Other cyber security and cyber-attack mitigation mechanisms are then covered in Informatics 2B. In Computer Science 3B, aspects relating to security are then expanded on with students introduced to several security goals that operating systems must aspire to, along with the threats that materialise to weaken these goals. Concurrently, the concepts of Confidentiality, Integrity, and Availability are introduced and conveyed in defensive programming in Informatics 3A when discussing good software architecture design practices.

Furthermore, ICS forms an integral requirement and part of software development in the 3rd year group project. Representatives from industry, who are usually paranoid about ICS, often evaluate these projects, as well as the 4th year individual projects with the expectation that the students’ projects will demonstrate appropriate ICS considerations.

Several modules that address ICS specifically are also offered to students at 4th year level and include: Information Security, Information Security in the WWW, Network Information Security, Information Security Risk Analysis, Information Security Governance, and Critical Information Infrastructure Protection.

All students therefore get a large and constant exposure to ICS. For more detailed information, see

Informal Cyber Security Capacity Building by the ACSSE

Through the Centre for Cyber Security (CCS) the ACSSE has created a unique model for Cyber Security Capacity Building in the SA industry.

The CCS is a virtual centre within the ACSSE. The CCS is primarily a cyber security capacity building instrument and offers several Certificate courses in Cyber Security and related subjects. These courses are all aimed at people from industry working full-time. This approach was specifically chosen because of the big demand for cyber security skills in the SA industry, and the fact that employees working full time cannot leave their jobs for long periods to study full time.

All courses are structured to be offered part-time. Courses generally consist of modules offered over several months - one module per month. The lecturers offering these courses are all full-time staff members of the ACSSE and offer these courses over and above daily academic degree activities. This allows a unique cross pollination via the lecturers between formal degree students and people working in industry - a win-win situation for all involved. The courses and presentations are as follows:

  • Certificate in Cyber Security - 5 x 3-day modules offered over a 6-month period (i.e. introductions to Cyber Security, Encryption Techniques, Digital Forensics, Malware, Ethical Hacking, Information Security Governance, and Critical Information Infrastructure Protection). Students attend a module and go back to their work. This Certificate has also been moved to an online mode.
  • Certificate in Digital Forensics - 3 x 3-day modules, offered in much the same mode as the Certificate in Cyber Security (i.e. focusing on digital evidence and investigative processes).
  • Certificate in Cyber Security Awareness - this course, developed on request by a Government Department, consists of one 5-day module.

For more detailed information, see