CS 491/591 Intro to Computer Security

Jim Hook/Jim Binkley

Fall 2008


Class Mechanics:


Class meets on Tuesday, Thursday, 4:40 - 6:30pm, Urban 303


Hook Office Hours: Tuesday, 1:00 - 3:00pm, FAB 120


Binkley Office Hours: Thursday, 1:00 - 3:00 pm, FAB 120




      Matt Bishop, Introduction to Computer Security. Addison-Wesley. 2004.

      Ross Anderson, Security Engineering. 2nd Edition. John Wiley and Sons. 2008. See: http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~rja14/book.html


Lecture Materials:


      Hook's lecture notes will be linked from this page. They will occasionally be revised.

      Binkley's lecture materials will be at: http://web.cecs.pdx.edu/~jrb/infosec/jrblectures/infosec.lectures.html.

      The user/password for this web page has already been placed in the email archive, so please join it and find the password.

      Material in the ACM portal can be accessed for free from machines on campus (this is based on the PSU IP address). It is possible to get these materials from home using the PSU VPN.


Prerequisites: CS 333 (operating systems), CS 350 (algorithms).  No programming needed. 




      Midterm: 100 points

      Final: 100 points

      Term Paper: 100 points

      Assignments, Quizzes, Discussion and Class participation: 50 points

      Academic paper bibliography research exercise: 25 points

      Annotated Bibliography: 25 points


Class Mailing List


There is a class mailing list, cs591 at cecs dot pdx dot edu. The web interface is:



Please sign up on the list. Critical announcements about class will be made on this list.


Students Requiring Accommodation:


If you are a student with a disability in need of academic accommodations, you should register with Disability Services for Students and notify the instructor immediately to arrange for support services.


Term Paper Assignment


A term paper is due at the beginning of the last lecture. A title, abstract, annotated bibliography, and outline are due the day of the midterm. See:



Academic Calendar:


class starts Tuesday Sept 30.

PSU academic calendar is at: http://www.pdx.edu/registration/calendar.html#2007-2008


Calendar (with reading assignments):


Lecture 1 (9/30): Introduction and Overview ppt pdf slides pdf handouts

      Read: Bishop Chapter 1

      Read: Can You Count on Voting Machines?, Clive Thompson, New York Times Magazine, January 6, 2008

      Scan: Ed Felten's blog entries on Freedom to Tinker on election issues. http://freedom-to-tinker.com/tags/voting

      Other interesting links: http://www.verifiedvotingfoundation.org/index.php


Lecture 2 (10/2): Access Control ppt pdf slides pdf handouts


      Read: Feldman, Halderman, and Felten, Security Analysis of the Diebold AccuVote-TS Voting Machine, September 2006.

      Read: Bishop Chapters 2 and 3

      Read: Anderson Chapter 1


Lecture 3 (10/7): Policy and Historical notes on Security ppt pdf slides pdf handouts


      Read: Bishop Chapter 4

      Reference: SANS Institute model policies: http://www.sans.org/resources/policies  

      Read: James P. Anderson, Computer Security Technology Planning Study: http://seclab.cs.ucdavis.edu/projects/history/papers/ande72a.pdf  

      Optional (and very long): Voluntary Voting System Guidelines: http://www.eac.gov/voting systems/voluntary-voting-guidelines/index_html


Lecture 4 (10/14): Bell-La Padula ppt pdf slides pdf handouts


      Read: David Elliott Bell, Looking Back at the Bell-La Padula Model, http://www.acsac.org/2005/papers/Bell.pdf   

      Read: Anderson Chapter 8

      Read Bishop Chapter 5


Lecture 5 (10/16): Integrity Models ppt pdf slides pdf handouts


      Read: Bishop Chapters 6 and 7

      Suggested: Anderson Chapter 10

      Supplemental: Brewer and Nash, , The Chinese Wall Security Policy

      IEEE Symposium on Research in Security and Privacy, May 1989. [This is the original paper; it contains more motivation than the text.]


Lecture 6 (10/21): Comments on Identity and Data Mining  ppt pdf slides pdf handouts


      NY Times article on NSA spying, Dec 2005, http://www.commondreams.org/headlines05/1216-01.htm

      USA Today article on NSA phone records, May 2006, http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2006-05-10-nsa_x.htm  

      Corinna Cortes, Daryl Pregibon and Chris Volinsky, "Communities of Interest'', The Fourth International Symposium of Intelligent Data Analysis (IDA 2001), 2001 http://homepage.mac.com/corinnacortes/papers/portugal.ps

      Gary M. Weiss (2005). Data Mining in Telecommunications. In O. Maimon and L. Rokach (eds.), Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery Handbook: A Complete Guide for Practitioners and Researchers, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1189-1201. http://storm.cis.fordham.edu/~gweiss/papers/kluwer04-telecom.pdf

      Read: Bishop Chapter 13

      Read: Anderson Chapter 20 and 22


Lecture 7 (10/21) Confinement and Virtualization [Hook]


Slides ppt (F07 ppt pdf slides pdf handouts)


      Corrected version of Bishop Chapter 16 slides (one update from errata, one revision) ppt pdf slides pdf handouts

      Read: Lampson, 1973, CACM article, available from ACM portal as http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/362375.362389 (TBD: html link is wrong).

      Read: Lipner, 1975, A Comment on the Confinement Problem. http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/800213.806537

      Read: Bishop Chapters 16 and 29

      Read: Intel May 2005 IEEE Computer article on virtualization: ftp://download.intel.com/technology/computing/vptech/vt-ieee-computer-final.pdf  (TBD broken link)

      Optional: Kocher, CRYPTO 96: Timing Attacks on Implementations of Diffie-Hellman, RSA, DSS, and Other Systems. http://www.cryptography.com/timingattack/paper.html

      Optional: R. Wahbe, S. Lucco, T. Anderson, and S. Graham, Efficient Software-based Fault Isolation, http://www.cs.cornell.edu/home/jgm/cs711sp02/sfi.ps.gz  

      Optional: Christopher Small, MiSFIT: A Tool for Constructing Safe Extensible C++ Systems, http://www.dogfish.org/chris/papers/misfit/misfit-ieee.ps

      Optional: Samuel T. King et al., SubVirt: Implementing malware with virtual machines. http://www.eecs.umich.edu/virtual/papers/king06.pdf


Lecture 8 (10/23): Access control and Information flow.  ppt

Note: there are a few extra }'s and one slide is repeated. (F07 ppt pdf slides handouts)

    * Read: Bishop Chapters 14 and 15

    * Read: Anderson Chapter 4

    * Andrei Sabelfeld and Andrew C. Myers, Language-based Information-Flow Security, http://www.cs.cornell.edu/andru/papers/jsac/sm-jsac03.pdf. Pay particular attention to Section III (Basics of Language-based information flow). Figures 2 and 3 were presented in lecture.

    * A file illustrating some issues discussed in class in flowcaml.


    Supplementary material:


       1. Denning and Denning, 1977, available from ACM portal: http://portal.acm.org/citation.cfm?doid=359636.359712

       2. Vincent Simonet, Flow Caml in a Nutshell at: http://cristal.inria.fr/~simonet/publis/simonet-flowcaml-nutshell.pdf    

       3. Flow Caml home page: http://cristal.inria.fr/~simonet/soft/flowcaml/ (I got the windows executable to work, but was not successful building the source distribution).

       4. A file derived from the flowcaml tutorial presented in class.


Lecture 9 (10/28) Assurance and Evaluation [Hook] ppt


      Read: Bishop Chapters 17 and 18

      Read: Anderson Chapter 26 [Note. Anderson and Bishop present very different perspectives on this topic]

      Another reading will be added on latest DoD "COTs Strategy"


Lecture 10 (10/30): Midterm exam. In class. Closed book. Blue book exam.


Past study questions and exams are provided below.  As lectures vary, some questions may be out of scope (not in exam if not in lecture materials)  (TBD: Jim Hook to finish)


      Fall 2007 midterm

      Winter 2007 midterm

      Fall 2007 final

      Fall 2006 exam pdf. (For Spring 2007 questions 1 and 2 are out of scope.)

      Fall 2006 exam presentation ppt pdf.

      Some new Study Questions for Fall 2006. Some of these questions still need to be refined. (Question 4 is out of scope for Spring 2007)

      Spring 2006 Study Questions for midterm (question 3 is out of scope for Spring 2007).

      Spring 2006 midterm and grading notes pdf pdf handouts. *

      Fall 2005 midterm and grading notes ppt pdf handouts. For Spring 2007 question 7 is out of scope.


Guest Lecture 11/4: Guest Lecture.  Hand in annotated bibliography on this day (date has not changed). 


Lecture 11 (11/6) Cryptography [Binkley]


    * Read: Bishop Chapters 8-10

    * Read: Anderson Chapter 3 and 5


November 11 is a university holiday.  No class.


Lecture 12 (11/13) Cryptography [Binkley]


Lecture 13 (11/15): Cryptography, Part 2 [Binkley], if time permits onto next lecture


Lecture 14 (11/20): Authentication, Design Principles, Tempest radiation [Binkley]


    * Read: Bishop Chapters 11 and 12

    * Read: Anderson Chapter 2, Chapter 15, Chapter 17

    * An excellent original source on Design Principles is the 1975 paper by Saltzer and Schroeder. A web version is available here


Lecture 15 (11/25): Malicious Logic [Binkley]


    * Read: Bishop Chapter 19


We may look at some botnet materials if time permits.


      Read: http://www.honeynet.org/papers/bots/ (http://www.honeynet.org/papers/kye.html is also worth a look)

      Read: "An Inside Look at Botnets", Barford, Yegneswaran, Special Workshop on Malware Detection, Advances in Information Security, Springer Verlag, 2006 (find at: http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~pb/botnets_final.pdf)


Lecture 17 (12/4): Intrusion Detection [Binkley]


      Read: Bishop Chapter 22

      also read:   "An Algorithm for Anomaly-based Botnet Detection," Binkley,

      Singh, USENIX SRUTI, July 2006. note: findable at http://www.cs.pdx.edu/~jrb


Lecture 19 (12/4) Network Security [Binkley]

      Read RA Chapter 21

      NB: Term paper due at start of lecture


Final Exam:  week of Dec 8-13.  Tuesday, Dec 9. 1730-1920.  closed book, no blue book needed.


Additional web resources:


Davis Security Lab Seminal Papers


National Information Assurance Training and Education Center


Bishop's Slides By Chapter