University of Texas at El Paso
Compuer Science

CS 4351 - Computer Security

Spring 2007

Course Syllabus

Course Description:
General concepts and applied methods of computer security, especially as they relate to confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information assets. Topics include system security analysis, access control and various security models, identification and authentication, protection against external and internal threats, communication protocols and internet security.

Course Goals:
With the multiplication of tasks that are performed on computers and the advent of globalisation of computing in general, the topic of computer security becomes more and more important. We see in this course what is computer security, especially as it relates to the protection of information stored on the computers and exchanged between computers. Topics include: system security analysis, access control and various security models, identification and authentication, security in UNIX and Windows, communication security, cryptography, internet security, e-commerce security protocols.

"Introduction to Computer Security", by Matt Bishop, Addison Wesley, 2005.

Exams and Grades:
There will be two tests. The rest of the grade will be based on written and/or programming assignments. The following percentages will be used in formulating the final grade:

Test 1 25%
Test 2 25%
Assignments 50%

Standards of Conduct:
Students are expected to conduct themselves in a professional and courteous manner, as prescribed by the Standards of Conduct. Students may discuss work assignments and programming exercises in a general way with other students, but the solutions must be done independently. Similarly, groups may discuss group project assignments with other groups, but the solutions must be done by the group itself. Graded work should be unmistakably your own. You may not transcribe or copy a solution taken from another person, book, or other source, e.g., a web page. Professors are required to -- and will -- report academic dishonesty and any other violation of the Standards of Conduct to the Dean of Students.

Faculty Information:
Professor: Luc Longpré
Office: 227 CS Building
Phone: 747-6804
longpre @ utep . edu
Office Hours: Tu-We-Th 1:30-2:30, or by appointment

Course outcomes:

Knowledge and Comprehension

  1. Describe the functioning of various types of malicious code, such as viruses, worms, trapdoors.
  2. Enumerate a set programming techniques that enhances security.
  3. Explain the various controls available for protection against internet attacks, including authentication, integrity check, firewalls, intruder detection systems.
  4. Describe the different ways of providing authentication of a user or program.
  5. Describe the mechanisms used to provide security in programs, operating systems, databases and networks.
  6. Describe the background, history and properties of widely-used encryption algorithms such as DES, AES, and RSA.
  7. Describe legal, privacy and ethical issues in computer security.
  8. List and explain the typical set of tasks required of a system security administrator.

Application and Analysis

  1. Compare different access control, file protection or authentication mechanisms.
  2. Incorporate encryption, integrity check and/or authentication into a given program or algorithm.
  3. Set up file protections in a Unix or Windows file system to achieve a given purpose.
  4. Distinguish between steganography and watermarking as document modification methods.

Synthesis and Evaluation

  1. Appraise a given code fragment for vulnerabilities.
  2. Appraise a given protocol for security flaws.
  3. Design a security protocol for a given application.
  4. Formulate a security plan for a given scenario, including risk analysis, organizational security policies, and planning for physical security and natural disasters.