Comprehensive Experimental Analyses of Automotive Attack Surfaces Presented Before the National Academy of Sciences

Congratulations to Karl Koscher, Alexei Czeskis, and Franziska Roesner, and their University of California at San Diego collaborators Steve Checkoway, Damon McCoy, Brian Kantor, and Danny Anderson, whose study of the vulnerability of modern cars to remote compromise was picked up by the press after being presented to the National Academy of Sciences. (We understand some faculty at UW and UCSD were involved as well.)

The Associated Press and The New York Times broke the story, with additional coverage at Technology Review, PCWorld, Slashdot, Jamie Zawinski’s blog, Boing Boing, and The Volokh Conspiracy. More information at the CEASS site.

The 2011 CPDP Multidisciplinary Privacy Award

UW security and privacy researchers had a strong showing at the 2011 Computers, Privacy & Data Protection conference in Brussels, Belgium, winning both the Multidisciplinary Privacy Award award and an honorable mention.

The goal of the CPDP multi-disciplinary privacy research award is to promote the need for and reward the results of multidisciplinary research, with the participation of the representative of diverse constituencies engaged in the investigation of the new ideas in data protection. Any paper published or accepted for publication in 2010 was eligible to win.

UW CSE grad student Alexei Czeskis and alumni Iva Dermendjieva and Hussein Yapit won the award for their work on balancing privacy and value tensions in mobile parenting technologies (published at SOUPS 2010 with co-authors Alan Borning, Batya Friedman, Brian Gill, and Tadayoshi Kohno). Alexei, pictured on the right, went to Belgium to receive the award.

UW CSE PhD student Tamara Denning won an honorable mention for her work on analyzing human values and security for wireless implantable medical devices (published at CHI 2010 with co-authors Alan Borning, Batya Friedman, Brian Gill, Tadayoshi Kohno, and William Maisel).


Transparent Tor Access Point

Jacob Appelbaum‘s new vision — to create a “home Internet with anonymity built in” — is featured in MIT’s Technology Review magazine. Jacob is a UW security and privacy lab research scientist and core Tor developer. His key idea is to integrate the Tor anonymity system directly into wireless routers, thereby making strong privacy more accessible to the general public. UW security researcher Alexei Czeskis and others from the Tor community are also participating in this project. Good luck Jacob and Alexei with this new direction!

Skein Chosen as SHA-3 Finalist

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has selected the Skein cryptographic hash function as one of five finalists in its SHA-3 competition. The winner will become the new U.S. hash function standard. Sixty-four proposed hash function designs were submitted to NIST when the competition began two years ago. Skein was designed by a team of cryptographers and computer security experts, including UW’s Yoshi Kohno. (If you look closely, you’ll notice that the team photo was taken in the beautiful halls of the UW Paul G. Allen Center for Computer Science & Engineering.)

Awards at UW CSE Industrial Affiliates Meeting

The annual UW Computer Science & Engineering Industrial Affiliates Meeting took place on October 27th and 28th. On the 27th, more than 100 representatives from Affiliates companies participated in a day of research presentations, and more than than 250 Seattle-area alumni joined for an evening of posters. There were also awards. UW security and privacy lab PhD students Karl Koscher, Alexei Czeskis, and Franzi Roesner won an award for their poster on car security, and PhD student Roxana Geambasu and graduate student Amit Levy won an award for their poster on Comet: An Active Distributed Key-Value Store.

The photo at the right, taken by UW CSE faculty member Bruce Hemingway, shows (from left) Karl, Alexei, and Franzi discussing their poster with an attendee.

Five New Types of Cyber Attacks

An article at AolNews warns of five new classes of cyber attacks, research into two of which were pioneered by UW security and privacy lab researchers. In 2008 UW researchers, in collaboration with the University of Massachusetts Amherst and the Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, published an award-winning paper at the 2008 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy evaluating the computer security risks and challenges with implantable medical devices. Earlier this year, UW and UC San Diego researchers published a paper at the 2010 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy describing the results of an extensive experimental analysis of a modern car. This research is forward-looking. No known threats have manifested to date, and UW researchers are now focused on developing defenses for futures medical devices and automobiles.

New York Times Magazine: Does the Web Ever Forget?

The New York Times Magazine has an excellent article discussing the consequences of a Web that never forgets. What happens when the innocent emails and Facebook posts you send today suddenly resurface 10 or 20 years later? Is there any way for users to proactively control the lifetimes of data stored on third-party Web services, like GMail, Facebook, and Flicker? Last year UW security and privacy researchers Roxana Geambasu and Amit Levy, along with faculty members Yoshi Kohno and Hank Levy, published an award-winning paper at 2009 USENIX Security describing a new approach for empowering users with such control. Their new direction direction, called Vanish, is featured in this article.

Security Lab Reunion at Oakland 2010

The IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (“The Oakland Conference”) is one of the flagship conferences for the computer security and privacy research community. Today all UW CSE affiliates (students, faculty, alumni, affiliate faculty) at Oakland decided to wear their UW CSE T-shirts. There was an impressive number of us there!

In the photo: Roxana Geambasu (UW CSE Ph.D. student), Tammy Denning (UW CSE Ph.D. student), David Molnar (MSR, teaching in UW CSE), Alexei Czeskis (UW CSE Ph.D. student), Franzi Roesner (UW CSE Ph.D. student), Stefan Savage (UW CSE Ph.D. alumnus, now UCSD CSE faculty), Steve Checkoway (UW CSE B.S. alumnus, now UCSD CSE Ph.D. student), Damon McCoy (UW CSE Ph.D. intern, now UCSD CSE postdoc), Karl Koscher (UW CSE Ph.D. student), Tadayoshi Kohno (UW CSE faculty), Gabriel Maganis (UW CSE B.S. alumnus, now UCD Ph.D. student), Charlie Reis (UW CSE Ph.D. alumnus, now Google Seattle), Miro Enev (UW CSE Ph.D. student), Vitaly Shmatikov (UW CSE B.S. alumnus, now UT Austin faculty).

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