CMPSCI 177: Computer Security and Privacy, Fall Quarter, 2013

Meeting Times

Lecture: Monday/Wednesday 2:00pm-3:15pm -- Phelps 1401
Discussion: Tuesday 5:00pm-5:50pm -- Phelps 3505


Richard A. Kemmerer
2165 Harold Frank Hall
Phone: 893-4232
Email: kemm AT
Office Hours: Monday, Wednesday 3:30pm - 4:30pm. Other times by appointment

Teaching Assistant

Kyle MacNamara
Phelps 1413
Email: kyle AT
Office Hours: Monday 12:00-1:00, Tuesday 9:00-10:00, Wednesday 12:00-1:00, Thursday 2:00-3:00, Friday: 4:00-5:00


This course will analyze the technical difficulties of producing secure computer information systems that provide guaranteed controlled sharing. Emphasis will be on software models and design. Current systems and methods will be examined and critiqued. The possible certification of such systems will also be investigated


The prerequisites for this course are some familiarity with programming languages and systems and the courage to read through some difficult-to-read technical papers. The course prerequisite is CMPSC170.

Required Text

Introduction to Computer Security by Matt Bishop
(or Computer Security: Art and Science by Matt Bishop)

Recommended Texts

Introduction to Computer Security by Goodrich and Tamassia
Information Security Principles and Practice by Mark Stamp
In addition, a collection of articles from the literature and research papers to read and discuss in class will be available.

Seminar Topics

Threats: spoofing, browsing, leakage, confinement, covert channels (storage and timing), Trojan horse, virus, spyware, aggregation, denial of service, and statistical inference.

Security Mechanisms: capabilities, access control lists, discretionary and mandatory access control, authentication mechanisms, inference controls.

Techniques: penetration analysis, intrusion detection, risk analysis, and information flow analysis (Threat Trees, Shared Resource Matrix, and Covert Flow Trees).

Encryption: conventional and public key encryption, digital signatures, DES, Clipper chip.

Authentication techniques: passwords, challenge-response, and biometrics.

Secure Operating Systems and Databases: reference monitor, security kernel, Multics, PSOS, Data Secure Unix, KSOS, SCOMP, LOCK, and ASOS.

Network Security: cryptographic techniques, firewalls, sniffers, and network browsers.

Security Models: Bell-LaPadula, Clark-Wilson, Take-Grant model, integrity model, container model, simple security, and *-property.

Electronic voting machine security.

Accreditation: DoD Computer Security Center and the Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria (TCSEC), European efforts and criteria (ITSEC), The Common Criteria (CC), and formal verification.

Course Requirements

There will be homework assignments, a midterm, and a final exam.

Final Exam

Monday December 9, 2013, 4:00pm - 7:00pm, Phelps 1401