MSIT 458: Information Security and Assurance
I. Course description:
The past decade has seen an explosion in the concern for the security of information. This course introduces students to the basic principles and practices of computer and information security. Focus will be on the software, operating system and network security techniques with detailed analysis of real-world examples. Topics include cryptography, authentication, software and operating system security (e.g., buffer overflow), Internet vulnerability (DoS attacks, viruses/worms, botnets, etc.), intrusion detection systems, firewalls, VPN, Web and wireless network security.
II. Required text and/or other materials:
III. Reference text and/or other materials:
IV. Required prerequisites or knowledge base
V. Rationale for inclusion in MSIT Program:
This course provides students with an extensive understanding of information security management with emphasis on network security. Whereas other courses provide an overview of the basics of the discipline, information security is simultaneously a technical and managerial discipline with enterprise-wide implications for employees, operations and systems at every level. For organizations to successfully implement and manage an effective and efficient security program while managing shifting risks associated with interrelated information technology and decision-making employees, contractors, vendors, and suppliers must understand the concepts, technologies and practices of information security and be able to apply them effectively in their own distinctive areas of responsibility.
VI. Course goal:
VII. Course Objectives:
Upon successful completion of this course, the student should be able to:
Course topics/content (by week):
Note: all homework are due by the 8am of Fri. morning.
|Sep. 17||Cryptography [crypto.ppt]||Stallings Chapters 2, 3 and 9, KPS Chapters 2, 3 and 5||Homework 1 for each
group due on Sep. 23.
||User authentication and
(case study: Microsoft Passport
system and Kerberos) [authentication.ppt]
|KPS Chapters 9 and 10,
Password Security: A Case History, Communications of ACM, vol.22 no.11, 1979.
Taxonomy of Botnet Threats, Trend Micro White Paper, November 2006
Project part 1, for each
individual student due on Sep. 30.
||Malcode and botnets [malcode.ppt][botnet.ppt]||Stallings Chapter 19
A Taxonomy of Computer Worms, N. Weaver, et al, the First ACM Workshop on Rapid Malcode (WORM), 2003.
[Reference]A Survey of Botnet Technology and Defenses, in the Proc. of the 2009 Cybersecurity Applications & Technology Conference for Homeland Security.
|Homework 3, due on Oct.
We will do a lab for nmap next week. Before that, you need to download nmap to you computer by following the instructions.
talk on "Cyber Crime Past, Present and Future!" by
Jibran Ilyas, Senior Incident Response Consultant, Trustwave
Network/Vulnerability scanner (case study: nmap and nessus (demo)).
Detecting SYN Flooding Attacks, H. Wang, D. Zhang, and K. G. Shin, in Proc. of IEEE INFOCOM, 2002
Web Based Attacks, Symantec white paper, Feb. 2009. (Podcast from Symantec).
|Project problem statement
presentation slides due on Oct. 25.
Web security paper summary and homework 4 due on Oct. 27.
DoS Attacks [DoS.ppt]
WWW Security and Defense [web.ppt].
Demo tutorial and SSH set up instructions if you would like to try the demo yourself.
Project problem statement presentation and feedback from each group (see the list below)
Vulnerability Analysis of Web-Based Applications, Chapter in
``Test and Analysis of Web Services", Springer, September
2007. [reference slides].
Homework 5 due by Nov. 3.
Detection/Prevention Systems (case study: snort IDS)
||Stallings Chapter 18 and 20||Homework 6 due on Nov. 10.|
||Invited talk on Security Policy, Security Automation and
Backtrack, by Brandon Hoffman, Director of
Customer Satisfaction in Redseal, a security software company.
|Handout from Chapter 9 of Firewalls and Internet Security: Repelling the Wily Hacker.||Project final solution slides
due on Nov. 15.
Homework 7 due on Nov. 17.
||Final project solution
presentations (see the list below).
Firewalls cont'ed and review for the final
|Wireless and Network Security Integration Solution Overview, Cisco Inc. Here are more detailed guidelines on the solutions (i.e., expanding the overview).||Wireless paper
summary and homework 8 due on Dec. 2.
|Dec. 3 AM
Wireless network security [wirelessSec.ppt]
and techonology integration for compliance (case study: Cisco)
|Dec. 3 PM
Invited talk on Cloud Security by Kurtis Minder, CISSP, Global Account Manager, Fortinet Inc.
IPSec[ipsec.ppt] and Symantec Internet Security Threat Report
|Stallings Chapters16 and KPS Chapter 17|
There will be
several group-based homework assignments so that students can
reflect on what they learn in each class and try to apply them. In
the beginning of each class, we will discuss the homework as
students are expected to engage in technical paper reading, and
writing summaries. These papers are carefully selected (with
little math!) which can be understood with the basic information
security and networking knowledge. Each group is
expected to briefly present their findings and takeaway of the
Your summary should include at least:
Project: each group will work on a quarter-long project called Information Security in Real Business with the following steps.
Yan Chen is an
Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering
and Computer Science at Northwestern University. He got his Ph.D.
in Computer Science from the University of California at Berkeley
in 2003. He has over ten years of experience in network security,
network and distributed system measurement and diagnosis, for both
wired and wireless networks. He won the Department of Energy (DOE)
Early CAREER award in 2005, the DoD (Air Force of Scientific
Research) Young Investigator Award in 2007, and the Microsoft
Trustworthy Computing Awards in 2004 and 2005 with his colleagues.
His research is also sponsored by National Science Foundation
(NSF), Motorola, and NEC. In addition to the industry sponsors, he
has widely collaborated with industry researchers from Microsoft,
AT&T, Motorola, Yahoo, Keynote, and the Internet Storm Center
of the SANS (SysAdmin, Audit, Network, Security) Institute.
According to Google Scholar, his papers have been cited for more
than 3,600 times. He has also offered security consulting services
to several companies.
He started several security courses at Northwestern University, including the EECS 350 Introduction to Computer Security, EECS 354 Network Penetration and Security, and EECS 450 Internet Security. He was awarded as a Searle Junior Fellow by the Searle Center for Teaching Excellence of Northwestern University in 2004.