The US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced plans to break ground on a new center that will be committed to cybersecurity research.

The National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence will be built near NIST’s Gaithersburg, Md., campus in hopes of strengthening the country’s cybersecurity products and services. 

 The center will be funded with $10 million of NIST’s budget for 2012 and co-sponsored with Montgomery County, Md., and the State of Maryland.

“Cyber crime hurts individuals, businesses and government agencies. We want to bring together the best minds and provide them with the best tools to create and test solutions that will make online transactions of all kinds safer,” said NIST Director Patrick Gallagher according to the release.

In a report issued by Maryland’s Lt. Governor Anthony Brown, the state has added almost 800 new cybersecurity jobs since January 2010 in the form of at least 50 new IT/cybersecurity companies.

The NIST is a non-regulatory agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce in charge of developing sciences, standards and technology. IN addition, the agency oversees the National Vulnerability Database, a database of security flaws, metrics and product names