Network Security

CSE 571S: Network Security, Fall 2018

Instructor: Ning Zhang,, public key
Meeting: TuThu 10:00 pm - 11:30 pm
Classroom: Lopata 202
Office Hour: Tuesday 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Course Description

This course covers principles and techniques in securing computer networks. Real world examples will be used to illustrate the rationales behind various security designs. There are three main components in the course, preliminary cryptography, network protocol security and network application security. Topics include IPSec, SSL/TLS, HTTPS, network fingerprinting, network malware, anonymous communication, and blockchain. The class project allows students to take a deep dive into a topic of choice in network security.


There is no textbook for the class. We will use research papers for some of the topics. However, the following references can be helpful.


There is no exam in this class, evaluation will be based on class participation, lab reports and final projects.

Labs 55% (14 + 14 + 14 + 13)
Projects 40%
Class Participation 5%


Slides, Lab Assignments and QA are in the WUSTL backboard system.
Date Topics Reading HW/Lab Assignment
8/28/2018 Course Overview, Security Fundamentals Reflections on Trusting Trust
8/30/2018 Network Protocol Attacks - Packet/IP/TCP A Look Back at “Security Problems in the TCP/IP Protocol Suite”
IP spoofing demystified
9/4/2018 Lab1 - TCP/IP Attack Studio
9/6/2018 Stream Cipher BonehShoup Ch3,
9/11/2018 Block Cipher Kaufman Ch 3, BonehShoup Ch 4 Lab 1 Due
9/13/2018 Block Cipher Kaufman Ch 4
9/18/2018 Block Cipher
9/20/2018 Lab2 - Block Cipher Studio
9/25/2018 Message Integrity Kaufman Ch 5, 6, 7
9/27/2018 Hash Functions Lab 2 Due
10/2/2018 Lab 3 - Hash Collision
10/4/2018 Authenticated Encryption
10/9/2018 Key Exchange Kaufman Ch 5, 6, 7
10/11/2018 Number Theory Lab 3 Due, Class Project Assigned
10/16/2018 Fall Break - No class
10/18/2018 Public Key Crypto
10/23/2018 Public Key Crypto
10/25/2018 Digital Signature, PKI, CA Kaufman Ch 15
10/30/2018 Lab 4 - PKI
11/1/2018 Network Protocol - Authentication Kaufman Ch 9
11/6/2018 Term Project Lightning Talk Class Project Proposal Due
11/8/2018 Network Protocol - IPSec Kaufman Ch 17,18 Lab 4 Due
11/13/2018 Network Protocol - TLS, HTTPS Kaufman Ch 19
11/15/2018 DNS, DDoS
11/20/2018 Firewall / Intrusion Detection Kauffman Ch 23
11/22/2018 Thanksgiving Break - No class
11/27/2018 No Class - Invidividual meeting on projects
11/29/2018 Blockchain
12/4/2018 Final Project Presentation
12/6/2018 Final Project Presentation
12/19/2018 Project Report Due

Extra credit eval -



The class project can be original research or survey on an existing topic in network security. Class project report should follow the IEEE conference template. The length of survey should sufficient to provide insight into a topic (It often requires more than 6 pages). The class project can also be improvement on an existing security tool. The development should be source controlled using tools, such as git. Students are expected to spend at least six to eight hours on the class labs and projects every week. Some of the ideas for projects are listed below

Project Proposal Evaluation Link -
class feedbacks:


With greater power, comes greater responsibility. In this course, we will be learning about and exploring some vulnerabilities that could be used to attack systems. Students are expected to behave responsibly and ethically. You may not attack any system prior approval of the site owners, and may not use anything you learn in this class to disrupt services or harm others. If you have any doubts about whether or not something you want to do is ethical and legal, you should check with the course instructor.

CSE 571s: Network Security, Fall 2018, Ning Zhang