Computer Laboratory > Teaching > Course material 2008–09 > Computer Science Tripos Syllabus and Booklist 2008-2009 > Security

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Lecturer: Professor R.J. Anderson

No. of lectures: 16

Prerequisite courses: Introduction to Security, Discrete Mathematics, Economics and Law, Operating Systems, Digital Communication I and II

This course is a prerequisite for E-Commerce.


This course aims to give students a thorough understanding of computer security technology. This includes high-level issues such as security policy (modelling what ought to be protected) and engineering (how we can obtain assurance that the protection provided is adequate). It also involves the protection mechanisms supported by modern processors and operating systems; cryptography and its underlying mathematics; electrical engineering issues such as emission security and tamper resistance; and a wide variety of attacks ranging from network exploits through malicious code to protocol failure.



At the end of the course students should be able to tackle an information protection problem by drawing up a threat model, formulating a security policy, and designing specific protection mechanisms to implement the policy.

Recommended reading

* Anderson, R. (2008). Security engineering. Wiley (2nd ed.). First edition (2001) available at
Stinson, D.R. (2002). Cryptography: theory and practice. Chapman & Hall (2nd ed.).
Schneier, B. (1995). Applied cryptography: protocols, algorithms, and source in C. Wiley (2nd ed.).

Further reading:

Kahn, D. (1966). The codebreakers: the story of secret writing. Weidenfeld and Nicolson.
Cheswick, W.R., Bellovin, S.M. & Rubin, A>D> (2003). Firewalls and Internet security: repelling the wily hacker. Addison-Wesley (2nd ed.)
Howard, M. & leBlanc, D. (2003). Writing secure code. Microsoft Press (2nd ed.)
Gollmann, D. (2006). Computer security. Wiley (2nd ed.).
Koblitz, N. (1994). A course in number theory and cryptography. Springer-Verlag (2nd ed.).
Neumann, P. (1994). Computer related risks. Addison-Wesley.
Biham, E. & Shamir, A. (1993). Differential cryptanalysis of the data encryption standard. Springer-Verlag.
Leveson, N.G. (1995). Safeware: system safety and computers. Addison-Wesley.
Davies, D.W. & Price, W.L. (1984). Security for computer networks. Wiley.
Beker, H. & Piper, F. (1982). Cipher systems. Northwood.
Cohen, F.B. (1994). A short course on computer viruses. Wiley (2nd ed.).

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