Exploring the opportunities of cisco packet tracer for hands-on security courses on firewalls

Zouheir Ben Trabelsi, Heba Saleous

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    Along with teaching the fundamental and theoretical information security concepts, nowadays, hands-on lab activities are key to any information security education program. Moreover, the use of a hands-on approach that is based on a virtual or simulated lab environment is important. Such an environment offers a safer, more secure, and affordable solution to build security laboratories where students can experiment with offensive and defensive techniques. This is especially beneficial for academic institutions with limited lab budgets. Cisco Packet Tracer is an educational simulation tool that is designed to simulate the creation and testing of network architectures based on Cisco networking devices. This paper explores the opportunities of using this tool for hands-on information security education, along with teaching networking concepts. Practically, the capabilities of Cisco Packet Tracer for the development of hands-on lab activities on firewall concepts (Network traffic filtering) will be demonstrated. The goal is to use Cisco Packet Tracer to allow students to better understand the basic concepts of firewalls through experiments on in a virtual laboratory. This paper also discusses the impact of offering Cisco Packet Tracer to the students and the instructors' opinions on the tool. Using the tool was found to help students understand course material easier at a lower cost but affected the amount of material that could be covered by the instructor.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of 2019 IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019
    EditorsAlaa K. Ashmawy, Sebastian Schreiter
    PublisherIEEE Computer Society
    Number of pages8
    ISBN (Electronic)9781538695067
    Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2019
    Event10th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019 - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
    Duration: Apr 9 2019Apr 11 2019

    Publication series

    NameIEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON
    ISSN (Print)2165-9559
    ISSN (Electronic)2165-9567


    Conference10th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019
    Country/TerritoryUnited Arab Emirates


    • Cisco packet tracer
    • Firewalls
    • Network security

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Engineering(all)
    • Information Systems and Management
    • Education


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