Secure Systems Engineering (LERSSE)

Laboratory for Education and Research in Secure Systems Engineering (LERSSE) led by Prof. Konstantin Beznosov.

Engineers in LERSSE do empirical research to improve the ability and the security of real-world applications. Research projects span a wide range of topics, including network security, enterprise security architectures, secure software engineering, the usability aspects of security mechanisms, and critical infrastructure interdependencies.

Ildar Muslukov is a Ph. D. candidate working in LERSSE. His research investigates security and privacy concerns on social networks or what we call the social web. The main objective of his research is data security on smart phones. He is focusing on loss and theft, what happens after a cell phone is stolen, can the data on a phone be accessed and what damage that might cause.

Yazan Boshmaf, Ph. D. student, conducted experiments on Facebook . The aim of this project was to characterize what makes social networks vulnerable to the abuse of automation. The experiment lasted for about 8 weeks used more then 100 social bots. These bots befriended each other and befriended random Facebook users. And after that they started befriending friends of friends and so on.

San-Tsai Sun, Ph. D. candidate, conducted security analysis on over 200 top websites and has uncovered several critical vulnerabilities that could allow an attacker to get unauthorized access to users’ data on those websites.

The problems researcher from this lab end up working on are problems that either end-users face or people who manage security in organizations or developers of secure systems face. All of the problems addressed at LERSSE have an applied nature.

The engineering students Professor Beznosov works with have great engineering skills, but more importantly they are highly creative in their designs for solutions to real-world problems and are highly self-motivated.His students are expected to work together and help each other by critiquing each other’s work. This make the academic environment robust; you have to be very excepting of the criticism and try to improve yourself. Students in LERSSE grow and develop their research and analytical skills and leave university able to do independent and world-class research.

Related publications:

Investigating Users’ Perspectives of Web Single Sign-On: Conceptual Gaps and Acceptance Model

Type Design and Analysis of a Social Botnet