CyberAI Project

Dakota Cary

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Dakota Cary was a Research Analyst at Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET), where he worked on the CyberAI Project. Dakota focused his research on China’s efforts to develop its hacking capabilities. His reports examined AI and cybersecurity research at Chinese universities, PLA efforts to automate software vulnerability discovery, and new policies to improve China’s cybersecurity talent pipeline. He holds an MA from Georgetown’s Security Studies program with a concentration in technology and national security, and also completed a certificate in Asian Studies. Prior to beginning his master’s program, Dakota worked in North Carolina politics.

Related Content

China is rapidly building cyber ranges that allow cybersecurity teams to test new tools, practice attack and defense, and evaluate the cybersecurity of a particular product or service. The presence of these facilities suggests a… Read More

In an opinion piece for Scientific American, Dakota Cary discussed why civilian satellites must be designated as critical infrastructure. Read More

In an opinion piece for The National Interest, Research Analysts Dakota Cary and Ali Crawford make the case for the use of U.S. federal prize competitions to spur innovation to compete with China. Read More

CSET Research Analyst Dakota Cary testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission hearing on "China’s Cyber Capabilities: Warfare, Espionage, and Implications for the United States." Cary discussed the cooperative relationship between Chinese universities… Read More

In an op-ed for TechCrunch, CSET Research Analyst Dakota Cary examines China's evolution of state-sponsored hackers for cyber espionage. Read More

CSET submitted this comment to the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the National Science Foundation to support the work of the National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource (NAIRR) Task Force to develop an implementation… Read More


Robot Hacking Games

September 2021

Software vulnerability discovery, patching, and exploitation—collectively known as the vulnerability lifecycle—is time consuming and labor intensive. Automating the process could significantly improve software security and offensive hacking. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s Cyber Grand… Read More

To what extent does China’s cultivation of talent in cybersecurity and AI matter in terms of competitiveness with other countries? Right now, it seems to have an edge: China’s 11 World-Class Cybersecurity Schools offer more… Read More

CSET's Dakota Cary describes China's plans to becomes a "cyber powerhouse" through the creation of its National Cybersecurity Center. Read More

In an opinion piece for the Hill, CSET's Dakota Cary explains how China's new rules on software vulnerabilities threaten cybersecurity. Read More

Data Visualization

National Cybersecurity Center Map

June 2021

China wants to be a “cyber powerhouse” (网络强国). At the heart of this mission is the sprawling 40 km2 campus of the National Cybersecurity Center. Formally called the National Cybersecurity Talent and Innovation Base (国家网络安全人才与创新基地),… Read More

China’s National Cybersecurity Center (NCC) resides on a 40 km2 plot in Wuhan. As one indication of its significance, the Chinese Communist Party’s highest-ranking members have an oversight committee for the facility. Over the next… Read More


Academics, AI, and APTs

March 2021

Six Chinese universities have relationships with Advanced Persistent Threat (APT) hacking teams. Their activities range from recruitment to running cyber operations. These partnerships, themselves a case study in military-civil fusion, allow state-sponsored hackers to quickly… Read More


Automating Cyber Attacks

November 2020

Based on an in-depth analysis of artificial intelligence and machine learning systems, the authors consider the future of applying such systems to cyber attacks, and what strategies attackers are likely or less likely to use. Read More

Machine learning may provide cyber attackers with the means to execute more effective and more destructive attacks against industrial control systems. As new ML tools are developed, CSET discusses the ways in which attackers may… Read More