Thousands of people are expected in Augusta this week at a trade show focused on cybersecurity.
The fifth annual TechNet Augusta convention will be Tuesday through Thursday at the Augusta Marriott at the Convention Center. Registration and training sessions begin Monday.
About 3,300 registrants are expected to attend, which would set yet another record for the event, said Barry White, president of the Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau.
“It is growing and it’s continuing to grow every year,” he said. “They’re bursting at the seams at the Convention Center.”
The event is popular largely because of its proximity to Fort Gordon, whose U.S. Army Cyber Center of Excellence operates the military’s largest communications and cybersecurity training centers.
The largest panel discussion scheduled for TechNet is titled “Fort Gordon Cyber District: The Future of Cybersecurity is Here.” The district is a partnership among area leaders to market the Augusta area as an ideal environment for technology professionals to live and work.
The Alliance for Fort Gordon announced the launch of the district Thursday, but it said the “official unveiling” would take place during TechNet.
The symposium will feature several discussions and work sessions centered around cyber and electronic warfare, workforce training and doctrine.
There will be continuing education classes for cybersecurity professionals to maintain their certifications; special programs for small businesses; and opportunities to explore new technology and business opportunities.
Exhibitors at TechNet will represent military, government, private-sector and academic aspects of cybersecurity.
TechNet grew out of Fort Gordon’s old Signal Symposium, which was thought to be Augusta’s largest annual gathering apart from the Masters Tournament.
The Signal Symposium last was held in 2004. It was canceled in 2005 because of budget constraints associated with the war in Iraq. Beginning in 2008, the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association, better known as AFCEA International, tried to revive the event. It re-emerged in 2013 as TechNet, with more than 2,000 attendees.
TechNet’s economic impact on the Augusta area has been calculated at almost $2.8 million, White said.
Reach Joe Hotchkiss at (706) 823-3543 or firstname.lastname@example.org.