Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams

Heinz College

What are the topics?

Heinz College


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Who should attend

  • managers who are interested in implementing or are required to implement a CSIRT
  • managers who have responsibility or must work with those who do have responsibility for computer security incident and management activities
  • managers who have experience in incident handling and want to learn more about operating effective CSIRTs
  • other staff who interact with CSIRTs and would like to gain a deeper understanding of how CSIRTs operate. For example, CSIRT constituents; higher-level management; media relations, legal counsel, law enforcement, human resources, audit, or risk management staff.

About the course

This three-day course provides current and future managers of computer security incident response teams (CSIRTs) with a pragmatic view of the issues that they will face in operating an effective team.

The course provides insight into the work that CSIRT staff may be expected to handle. The course also provides prospective or current managers with an overview of the incident handling process and the types of tools and infrastructure needed to be effective.

Technical issues are discussed from a management perspective. Topics include hiring CSIRT staff, identifying critical information, publishing information, establishing effective working relationships, working with law enforcement, evaluating CSIRT operations, building CSIRT service capacity, and the importance of pre-established policies and procedures.

The course incorporates interactive instruction, exercises, and role playing. During a simulated incident, attendees will gain experience with the type of decisions they might face on a regular basis.

Before attending this course, participants are encouraged to attend the companion course, Creating a Computer Security Incident Response Team. This course is offered the day before the Managing CSIRTs course.

Note: There is some content overlap between the Managing CSIRTs course and the Foundations of Incident Management course. We recommend that attendees register for one course or the other, but not both. The Managing CSIRTs course focuses on incident handling issues from an operational management perspective and discusses best practices in sustaining an effective operation. The Fundamentals of Incident Handling course covers more technical topics such as email and malware attacks. The Fundamentals of Incident Handling course is designed to introduce new incident handlers to the basic skills and processes they will need to perform incident handling work.


This course will help participants to

  • recognize the importance of establishing well-defined policies and procedures for incident management processes
  • identify policies and procedures that should be established and implemented for a CSIRT
  • understand incident management activities, including the types of activities and interactions that a CSIRT may perform
  • learn about various processes involved in detecting, analyzing, and responding to computer security events and incidents
  • identify key components needed for protecting and sustaining CSIRT operations
  • manage a responsive, effective team of computer security professionals
  • evaluate CSIRT operations and identify performance gaps, risks, and needed improvements


  • incident management process
  • hiring and mentoring CSIRT staff
  • developing CSIRT policies and procedures
  • requirements for developing CSIRT services
  • handling media issues
  • building and managing the CSIRT infrastructure
  • coordinating response
  • handling major events
  • working with law enforcement
  • evaluating CSIRT operations
  • incident management capability metrics


Participants will receive a course notebook and a downloadable copy of course materials.

Managing Computer Security Incident Response Teams at Heinz College

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Coursalytics is an independent platform to find, compare, and book executive courses. Coursalytics is not endorsed by, sponsored by, or otherwise affiliated with any business school or university.

Full disclaimer.

Because of COVID-19, many providers are cancelling or postponing in-person programs or providing online participation options.

We are happy to help you find a suitable online alternative.