Danfeng "Daphne" Yao, associate professor of computer science in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been named an L-3 Communications Cyber Faculty Fellow of Computer Science by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The L-3 Faculty Fellowship in Cyber Security was created in 2011 through a partnership between L-3 Communications, National Security Solutions, and Virginia Tech's Ted and Karyn Hume Center for National Security and Technology. L-3's faculty support is directed to researchers in cyber-security within the College of Engineering. With Yao's appointment, two associate professors hold L-3 Fellowships. Charles Clancy is the other Fellow.

A member of the Virginia Tech faculty since 2010, Yao has broad experience working with system, network, and program security. She has managed major federal research and development projects, has published high-impact, award-winning research papers, has patented several security technologies, and has been involved in top computer security conferences and journals.

Yao’s research focuses on securing complex computer programs in critical environments by using program behavior analysis and malware detection, ensuring the integrity of networked systems by using traffic anomaly detection and reasoning, and preserving the confidentiality of sensitive data by using data exfiltration detection.

She has written 11 peer reviewed journal publications, 42 peer reviewed conference and workshop publications, and two book chapters.

Yao has served as a program committee member for top security conferences and was recently selected to become an associate editor of IEEE Transactions on Secure and Dependable Computing.

She has secured a high level of sponsored research funding to support her research. She is either a principal investor or co-principal investigator on $2 million in sponsored research.

In 2013, Yao received a three-year, $450,000 grant from the Office of Naval Research for research on cyber security.

Yao received her bachelor’s degree from Peking University (China), a master's degree from Princeton University, a master's degree from Indiana University, and a Ph.D. from Brown University.

Dedicated to its motto, Ut Prosim (That I May Serve), Virginia Tech takes a hands-on, engaging approach to education, preparing scholars to be leaders in their fields and communities. As the commonwealth’s most comprehensive university and its leading research institution, Virginia Tech offers 240 undergraduate and graduate degree programs to more than 31,000 students and manages a research portfolio of $513 million. The university fulfills its land-grant mission of transforming knowledge to practice through technological leadership and by fueling economic growth and job creation locally, regionally, and across Virginia.