ECE: Electrical & Computer Engineering

ECE 5560 Fundamentals of Information Security

Fall 2016 textbook list

The Fall 2016 ECE textbook list is available online for students.

Current Prerequisites & Course Offering

For current prerequisites for a particular course, and to view course offerings for a particular semester, see the Virginia Tech Course Timetables.

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ECE 5560 Fundamentals of Information Security (3C)

Principles of information security and relevant mathematical concepts. Classical ciphers, relevant abstract algebra and number theory, symmetric-key ciphers, cipher modes of operation, and asymmetric-key ciphers. Cryptographic hash functions and message authentication codes. Elliptic curve cryptography and cryptosystems. Applications and standards relevant to network and computer security.

What is the reason for this course?

Past experiences have shown us that security mechanisms of a given system or network must be properly designed from the very beginning, and not added on as an afterthought. If the required security mechanisms are not carefully integrated into the target system/network a priori to deployment, potential security breaches can inflict enormous damage. This issue is becoming more critical than ever as we see an increase in the exchange of sensitive information (e.g., medical records, financial data, etc.) over insecure network links. the design, deployment, and management of secure systems or networks require the ability to understand core security concepts, analyze the security vulnerabilities of a target system, and design necessary cryptosystems for the target system. This course provides requisite knowledge of fundamental security concepts and a brief introduction to their applications that are need3ed by students who are conducting research in security-related topics.

Typically offered: Fall. Program Area: Computers.

Prerequisites: Graduate Standing.

Why are these prerequisites or corequisites required?

Graduate Standing

Cross-listed with CS 5560

Department Syllabus Information:

Major Measurable Learning Objectives:
Course Topics
Topic Percentage
1. Introduction to basic security concepts 5%
2. Classical ciphers 5%
3. Abstract algebra: a) Groups, rings, fields, and finite fields; b) Modular arithmetic and arithmetic in finite fields; c) The Euclidean algorithm 10%
4. Symmetric-key cryptosystems and Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) 20%
5. Cipher modes of operation 5%
6. Number theory: a) Primality testing algorithms, the Chinese remainder theorem; b) Fermat's little theorem, Euler's theorem; c) Euler's totient function, the discrete logarithm problem 10%
7. Asymmetric-key cryptosystems 20%
8. Cryptographic hash functions and message authentication codes 5%
9. Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC) and ECC-based cryptosystems 5%
10. Applications of cryptographic algorithms and protocols 15%

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