Dr. Sean Peisert is an expert in cybersecurity. He leads cybersecurity research and development, and also leads cybersecurity operations for an Internet backbone provider in California.

His current R&D focus includes data security and privacy in distributed, high-performance, and cloud computing environments, and cybersecurity for power grid control systems. His view of security is as an “enabling” capability that, when done properly, can allow organizations to operate more effectively.

As Chief Cybersecurity Strategist for CENIC, he develops cybersecurity strategy and implements cybersecurity practices for CENIC’s enterprise and external network (CalREN), a 100Gb network in California, relied on by more than 10,000 institutions and 20 million users.


Dr. Peisert occasionally serves as a consultant to companies and organizations in areas of software, system, and network security strategy and design, and is available on a limited basis as a subject-matter expert_advising executives, boards, investors, and entrepreneurs developing or leveraging cybersecurity or privacy-preserving technologies_, and for participation on _advisory boards_.


Dr. Peisert received his Ph.D., Masters, and Bachelors degrees in Computer Science from the University of California, San Diego. His background includes experience in cybersecurity at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, the Energy Sciences Network (ESnet), the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC), the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC), and as an adjunct associate professor of computer science at the University of California, Davis and also as an associate adjunct professor of health informatics at the University of California, Davis School of Medicine.

He has also worked in both R&D and operational aspects of computer security and networking. His R&D work typically focuseses on developing processes and techniques that can provide meaningful, useful, and measurable improvements to and/or insights regarding computer security and its applications.

Recent highlights of the R&D that he has led include:

He has also worked on projects to:

As Chief Cybersecurity Strategist for CENIC, he develops cybersecurity strategy and implements cybersecurity practices for both CENIC’s enterprise and external network (CalREN) of more than 20 million users.

In 2007, he was honored as a Research Fellow by the Institute for Information Infrastructure Protection, funded by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

He has taught university courses in security for health informatics, computer forensics, “insider” threats, and critical systems; advised numerous graduate students; has published more than 60 peer-reviewed papers, invited articles, book chapters, and technical reports; and has given over 75 invited talks and tutorials in a variety of venues.

He is actively involved with the computer security community, as well as communities to which he studies, develops, and applies computer security techniques, including medical and public policy organizations, and other organizations operating critical infrastructure. He works closely with industry, and is a member of the Cybersecurity Research and Development Advisory Committee for the California Joint Utility Program, “California Energy Systems for the 21st Century (CES-21),” a $35M, ratepayer-funded effort.

He has led numerous cybersecurity-related working groups, including two workshops in 2015 for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Advanced Scientific Computing Research to establish key needs and directions for a high-performance computing cybersecurity research and development program, culminating in the development of recommendations for hardware/software co-design of future high-performance computing systems to build cybersecurity for data-intensive, scientific computing in from the outset.

He also co-led the Open Science Cyber Risk Profile (OSCRP) working group — a cross-disciplinary group of computer security professionals and scientific researchers that worked to develop a document designed to help researchers understand the cyber risks to their work.

In addition to his work in computer security, he spent several years as a Senior Fellow at the San Diego Supercomputer Center working in areas of high-performance computing, compilers, and code optimization.

He is associate editor-in-chief of IEEE Security & Privacy magazine; a steering committee member and past general chair of the New Security Paradigms Workshop; a steering committee member and past program co-chair of the Workshop on Cyber Security Experimentation and Test (CSET); past chair and vice chair of the IEEE Computer Society Technical Committee on Security & Privacy; and is past general chair for the 2015 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy, the flagship conference for computer security research.


To inquire about retaining him on a project, please contact him by email at spp@peisert.net.

Further Information

More information about Dr. Peisert’s R&D work, including lists of his publications, security R&D projects, and press items are on his UC Davis and Berkeley Lab web sites.