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Seminar:  A Decoy Substrate for Information Security

Date:January 28, 2013 
Talk Title:A Decoy Substrate for Information Security
Speaker:Angelos Keromytis, Associate Professor of Computer Science, Director of the Network Security Lab at Columbia University
Time & Location:12:00pm - 1:00pm
CIC Building, Pittsburgh


Traditional information security thinking has been focused on controlling and restricting the flow of information via a variety of technical and policy means. We argue that such an approach cannot meet its goals given (a) a ubiquitous and easy-to-connect to network, the Internet; (b) many systems with large volumes of information from different domains (governmental, health, financial, personal, etc.) connected to said network; (c) parties that place value (monetary or otherwise) on this information. Under these conditions, it is perhaps not surprising that the slogan "Information wants to be free" is made true. We will discuss a more flexible approach to information (and systems) security, focusing on the true goal of malicious adversaries: the information itself. Active, automated, large-scale use of decoy information offers great possibilities in identifying, tracking, confusing, and misdirecting adversaries in a number of environments and threat models. We will discuss the basic  principles behind active deception, and its application in some interesting and technically difficult problem domains. 

Speaker Bio

Angelos D. Keromytis is an Associate Professor of Computer Science, Director of the Network Security Lab at Columbia University, and an ACM Distinguished Scientist. His research interests center on systems/network security and applied cryptography, with a current focus on self-healing systems, software hardening, information flow tracking, and cloud security. He received his Ph.D. in 2001 from the University of Pennsylvania, and his B.Sc. from the University of Crete in 1996, both in computer science. His current CV and list of publications can be found at