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We can engage in a long-term, challenging research and development
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SUZUKI Koei鈴木 宏栄Senior Research Engineer
Cybersecurity Laboratory
Cybersecurity Research Insitute /
Senior Research Engineer
Cybersecurity Nexus

(At the time of theinterview)

Senior Technical Researcher
Cybersecurity Laboratory
Cybersecurity Research Insitute

He worked at a private company before joining NICT. In 2009, he joined NICT because his previous company was conducting a joint project with NICT. He started to work as a fixed term technical researcher in 2011. He was promoted to a permanent position in 2015. He has been engaged in research and development of cybersecurity technology.

We have an environment here where engineers and researchers can work equally and responsibly.

Before joining NICT, I was developing a security monitoring system at a private company. I learned about NICT because some of my colleagues were working on a joint project with NICT at that time. Wanting to use, in a public institution, the knowledge and technologies that I had gained relating to security, I asked those colleagues to introduce me to NICT. Until then, I was an engineer specializing in system development at a private company. I did not have any experience in research and development at a research institute. When I joined NICT, I was often perplexed by the difference in the development process between NICT and a private company. However, I solved this issue by proactively proposing an optimal process. NICT is what is called a research institute. Therefore, some of you may think that engineers feel inferior at the workplace. That is not true here. We can all work responsibly without any restriction. NICT provides us with a comfortable working environment, ensuring the equal treatment for both engineering and researcher positions.

To return the research results to society, we promote development through active discussion.

The Cybersecurity Laboratory, to which I belong, conducts research on security technologies to defend against increasingly sophisticated cyber attacks. In particular, I am in charge of developing, in cooperation with researchers, in-house systems required to solve research challenges. Moreover, my responsibility includes spreading the research results into society for many users to use. I am responsible for the process from design to programming; document preparation; testing; and system release, operation, and maintenance. The difficult part of this work is that the research subject must be incorporated into the design and systematized in a short period of one to three months. We repeat processes of exchanging ideas, creating prototypes, and checking corrections until the completion of the system. Each member has his/her own strengths and weaknesses. Thus, we promote development by actively discussing and complementing each other.

I would like to disseminate the research results as domestically produced security tools to further contribute to society.

The biggest advantage of working at NICT is that we can engage in challenging research and development that can never be conducted by private companies which emphasize profitability. In my case, I worked for about ten years on an experimental research project aimed at developing security operation methods using visualization. Finally, I have successfully put into practical use a system with unique, original visuals. Additionally, I can be inspired every day by meeting experts in various fields through collaboration within NICT and with other organizations throughout the world. What makes me happy is that I can feel that what I engaged in now plays a useful role in society. When a system debuts at an event, it attracts attention of tens of thousands of people. In the future, I would like to disseminate our research results as domestically produced security tools to further contribute to society. To that end, I will make further efforts to flexibly respond to social needs through close collaboration with other research institutes and companies. NICT provides a work environment where everyone can play an active role, not only researchers but also engineers in various fields. If you have something outstanding to offer, please apply to our institute.

My research results

Currently, some systems that I participated in the development are sold via private companies, and they are actually operated at events in Japan and overseas.

The systems that I participated in the development and were released into society include: “NIRVANA Kai” and “DAEDALUS.” NICT cannot sell the systems that it developed because it is a public institution. Thus, the technologies relating to these systems are transferred to private companies. Then, they are sold through these companies to be introduced to other companies, educational institutions, research institutions, and many other organizations. At SECCON CTF, one of the largest security contests in Japan, our two visualization systems for cyber simulated “capture the flag” battles: “NIRVANA Kai SECCON Custom” and “AMATERAS Zero” are actually operated to visualize battle situations in real time. These systems are also used at security competitions held in regions and countries worldwide, such as Taiwan and New Zealand.

My free time

On my days off, I often spend time with my family, for example, going to a park with my children. Because I live close to my workplace, I try to go home as early as possible even on weekdays to have dinner with my family. I am grateful that I can take enough time for myself and my family.

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