LSU’s Stephenson Disaster Management Institute will partner with a California company in an effort to solve cyber security issues for critical infrastructure.

The institute will use California-based Ixia’s PerfectStorm test in its “cyber range” to simulate cyber attacks on structures that provide basic but vital services, such as power stations and water treatment plants.

Ixia says its software provides realism and scale, which in turn will help the partners provide new techniques to detect and defend against cyber threats.

Among other things, the partnership will share that information to better protect critical systems and data.

The LSU institute’s capabilities make it possible to connect participants, such as the federal government, private industry, universities, businesses and critical infrastructure providers through public, private and academic partnerships.

“Our focus is to protect our community and improve resiliency against disasters and their aftermath,” Henry Capello, director of information services for SDMI, said. “We were founded after Katrina hit Louisiana, and the repercussions made it clear that we need to be more prepared for all kinds of disasters. As recent events have shown, cyber attacks can cause great damage, and if an intruder alters critical infrastructure, it could have devastating consequences, including loss of life.”