Computer Security Curriculum

MS Security Engineering

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Security Engineering and Information Assurance Certificate Program

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Department of Defense (DoD) Information Assurance Scholarship Program (IASP)

If you are an SMU student and want more information about this program at SMU, see the official specifications.

Security Courses at SMU

Introduces economics as a tool for understanding and managing information security. Reviews key information security challenges and technologies in order to reason about the topics economically. Students are introduced to techniques of analytic and empirical modeling. Economic concepts reviewed include rationality, markets, and information. Models and metrics of security investment are presented, along with cost-benefit analysis techniques. Techniques for empirical investigation and measurement of cybercrime are presented. Security games are designed to capture the strategic interaction between defenders, as well as between attacker and defenders. Implications for public policy are discussed. Prerequisite (for 5338): CSE 3353 or junior standing for non-CSE majors.

Systems security is typically a student's first course in the security sequence at SMU. This course investigates a broad selection of contemporary issues in computer security including an assessment of current technology used to address security problems. Through the course, students will be exposed to topics ranging from basic encryption and decryption, secure encryption systems, program security, trusted operating systems, database security, network and distributed systems security, administering security, and legal and ethical issues.

The course will cover conventional as well as state-of-the-art methods in achieving data and network security. Private key and public key encryption approaches will be discussed in detail with coverage on popular algorithms such as DES, AES and RSA. In the network security area, the course will cover authentication protocols, IP security, Secure Socket Layer, Web security and system level security. Prerequisites are the systems security class and an introductory networks class (such as CSE 4344).

As software is delivered across networks and Web-based environments, security is critical to successful software deployment. This course focuses on software security issues that pertain to the network application layer in the classic OSI model. At the application network layer, issues related to encryption, validation and authentication are handled programmatically rather that at the network level. Students will work with APIs for cryptography, digital signatures and third-party certificate authorities. Also this course explores issues related to XML and Web services security by examining standards and technologies for securing data and programs across collaborative networks. Prerequisites are the systems security class and experience programming in Java or C++ using NS.

This course introduces several contemporary topics in hardware security, with a particular emphasis on hardware Trojans. Other topics include physically unclonable functions, the problem of counterfeiting, security implications of design for testability in hardware, intellectual property protection, and secure coprocessors and smart cards. The prequisite for this course is a digital logic design class (such as CSE 3381).

Advanced network and system security gives a more thorough look at secure networks and systems. This course provides an in-depth analysis of secure networks and systems, security audit, intrusion detection and prevention, storage security, firewall configurations, security log analysis, DMZs, honeypots, malicious codes, and mobile and grid computing security. The prerequisite for this course is CSE 7349 (Data and Network Security).

Cryptography is the study of mathematical systems for solving two kinds of security problems on public channels: privacy and authentication. Cryptography and data security analyzes the theory and practice of classic and modern cryptographic systems. The fundamental issues involved in the analysis and design of a modern cryptographic system will be identified or studied. The prerequisite for this course is a semester of introductory statistics (such as CSE/STAT 4340).

Security-related Courses at SMU

This course will provide a survey of quantum logic and quantum computing from the viewpoint of a computer engineer or computer scientist. The course will focus on issues of quantum logic circuit design, models of quantum computation and quantum computer algorithms. Existing and emerging circuit elements used to implement quantum logic circuits are surveyed. Principles of quantum mechanics as related to quantum computation will be introduced as the course proceeds. The prerequisite for this course is any one of CSE 7381 (Computer Architecture), CSE 7385 (Microprocessor Architecture and Interfacing), EE 7381 (Digital Computer Design) or EE 7385 (Microprocessors in Digital Design), or consent of instructor.

Detecting and correcting integrated circuit design errors before device fabrication is an increasingly complex and costly problem. A large amount of effort is expended in the design verification and validation process in industry. This course will survey the most common approaches used in industry and in other research environments. Emphasizes tradeoffs between formal methods and validation techniques and the use of commercial state-of-the-art software tools. Includes equivalence checking, model checking, theorem proving and advanced topics in validation and simulation. The prerequisites for this course are programming languages, data structures, advanced digital logic design and computer architecture, or consent of the instructor.

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