About us

The National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity ATHENE is a research center of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft with the participation of the Fraunhofer Institutes SIT and IGD as well as the universities Technische Universität Darmstadt and Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences. In a unique and innovative cooperation model of university and extra-university research, ATHENE conducts cutting-edge research for the benefit of business, society and government and strives for academic leadership. ATHENE is an agile research organization and therefore capable of responding quickly to new challenges and emerging threats.

ATHENE is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Hessen State Ministry for Higher Education, Research and the Arts (HMWK) and is located in the science city of Darmstadt, Germany's top address for cybersecurity research.


Facts about ATHENE

Optimal working conditions

in an inter­national environment with close contacts to industry and economy

Agile research organization

makes ATHENE capable of analyzing new types of attacks and vulnerabilities as they emerge

New and unique cooperation model

of university and non-university research

Located

in the city of science Darmstadt, Germany's first address for cybersecurity research


History

2019

CRISP is upgraded to a National Research Center for Applied Cybersecurity. Since January 1, it is a research center of the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft for its two Darmstadt-based institutes SIT and IGD, in cooperation with Technische Universität Darmstadt and Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences. At the end of 2019, the research center is renamed ATHENE.

2017

In the context of its Digital Hub Initiative, the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs designates the region Frankfurt-Darmstadt as a pre-eminent hotspot for the digital transformation of the economy. Darmstadt takes on the role of "Digital Hub Cybersecurity", thus complementing the "Digital Hub FinTech" that was already announced in Frankfurt in 2016.

In June, Darmstadt wins the Bitkom competition "Digital City (Digitale Stadt)". Over several years, Darmstadt will be developed into a digital model city. The digitalization projects focus on traffic, energy, schools and healthcare.

On December 1, the start-up incubator "StartUpSecure" is launched at CRISP. The incubator is sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and aims at promoting young companies in the field of IT security.

2016

The center of excellence "Sicherheit und Datenschutz in der Digitalen Welt" opens, in which the Fraunhofer Institutes SIT und IGD cooperate to facilitate the rapid transfer of research results into practice. The founding of the excellence center further strengthens Darmstadt’s inter­national cybersecurity leadership.

2015

The IT security research centers EC SPRIDE and CASED, funded by federal government and state respectively, bundle their resources to form CRISP (Center for Research in Security and Privacy). Members of CRISP are Technische Universität Darmstadt, with its IT research profile area CYSEC, the University of Applied Sciences Darmstadt, the Fraunhofer Institute for Secure Information Technology (Fraunhofer SIT) and the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research (Fraunhofer IGD), both located in Darmstadt. This makes CRISP the biggest alliance of research facilities in the field of cybersecurity in Europe.

2014

In the the winter semester 2014/15, the University of Applied Sciences in Darmstadt establishes the dual study program for IT security (Kooperativer Studiengang IT-Security, KITS).

2011

The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) supports the European Center for Security and Privacy by Design (EC SPRIDE) as one of three competence centers for IT security. EC SPRIDE aims at developing insights, procedures and tools which help to secure software and IT systems in the design phase and over the complete lifecycle.

2008

DZI becomes part of the LOEWE center Center for Advanced Security Research Darmstadt (CASED). LOEWE stands for the State Offensive for Scientific and Economic Excellence (Landesoffensive für wissenschaftlich-ökonomische Exzellenz), an initiative of the Hessian Ministry for Science and Art which supports the creation of regional focus areas and the networking of science, non-university research and economy. In CASED, Technische Universität Darmstadt, the University of Applied Sciences and the Fraunhofer Institute SIT are bundling their competences in the field of IT security.

2002

The Darmstadt Center for IT-Security (DZI) is founded. Until 2008 it bundles the various IT security activities of the Technische Universität Darmstadt.

2001

With the support of the Horst Görtz Foundation, Claudia Eckert becomes the first professor for Security in Information Technology at the Technische Universität Darmstadt.

1999

Darmstadt’s universities and research institutions, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Fraunhofer IGD, GMD-SIT (now Fraunhofer SIT), GMD-IPSI, University of Applied Sciences and several industrial representatives found the Competence Center for Applied Security (CAST).

1987

Professor José Luis Encarnação establishes the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD. The institute is considered one of the first research institutions with its own website, doing research on internet technologies.