General Information

Instructor Matt Bishop, 3059 Engineering Unit II; phone: 752-8060;
email:; web page:
Office hours: Tu 2:00-3:00PM, F 1:30-3:00PM, by appointment or by chance
Teaching Assistant Tom Walcott, 3090 Engineering Unit II
Office hours: Tu 4:00-5:00PM, W 7:00-9:00PM
Lecture MWF 10:00AM - 10:50AM in 107 Cruess Hall
Discussion Section F 11:00-11:50AM in 115 Hutchison Hall
We will use these to make up some classes. Material presented here will be on exams.
Course Outline Introduce principles, mechanisms, and implementations of computer security; learn how attacks work, how to defend against them, and how to design systems to withstand them
Course Goals Some goals we hope you achieve:
  1. learn about security in the UNIX system and programming environments;
  2. learn how to attack a system, and to defend it by analyzing the system for vulnerabilities and ameliorating those problems;
  3. understand the strengths, and weaknesses of cryptography as a tool of security
  4. learn how access to systems, resources, and data can be controlled;
  5. learn the basics of writing security-related programs;
  6. learn about security in networks;
Text We shall use parts of the text Computer Security: Art and Science. Readings from this text will be distributed in class. A recommended text is:
  • S. Garfinkel and E. Spafford, Practical UNIX & Internet Security, Second Edition, O'Reilly and Associates, Inc., Sebastopol, CA. ©1996.
Computers All registered students have been given an account on the computer science instructional machines in the basement. Change your password as soon as you can; if it is not changed within a week, your account will be disabled and you will have to see a system programmer to have it reset.
Course Handouts Most course handouts, programs, and samples will be available in the directory ~cs153 on any of the CSIF worktations, and from For copies of handouts not on the web site, please see me or the TA.
Class Newsgroup Information about this class, homework assignments, and so forth, will be posted to the newsgroup ucd.class.ecs153. Read this newsgroup daily! You are responsible for everything posted to this newsgroup. We'll use it to put out important information. Please do not post to this newsgroup. If you want to post things about the class, please use the discussion newsgroup ucd.class.ecs153.d. Discussing something in this group is perfectly fair.
Homework Homework is due at the beginning of class on the date stated on the homework. See the section All About Homework for more information.
Extra Credit Extra credit in this course will be tallied separately from regular scores. If you end up on a borderline between two grades at the end of the course, extra credit will count in your favor. However, failure to do extra credit will never be counted against you, because grades are assigned on the basis of regular scores. You should do extra credit if you find it interesting and think that it might teach you something. However, it is not wise to skimp on the regular assignment in order to do extra credit.
30%Homework20%Midterm exam
30%Term Project20%Final exam
Exams Midterm -- Friday, November 5, 1998, in class
Final examination -- Tuesday, December 14, 10:30AM-12:30PM

These are open book/open notes exams. No early or late exam will be given; if you miss an exam for medical reasons (you must document this; no other excuses are acceptable), you may be allowed or required to take a make-up exam, or the other parts of the course will be counted proportionally more (the choice is the instructor's). In particular, forgetting the time or place of an exam is not an excuse for missing it!

Academic Integrity Please see the Fall 1999 Class Schedule and Room Directory for a general discussion of this. In particular, for this course:
  • All work submitted for credit must be your own. You may discuss your assignments with classmates, with instructors, or with teaching assistants or readers in the course to get ideas or a critique of your ideas, but the ideas and words you submit must be your own. Unless explicitly stated otherwise in the assignment, collaboration is considered cheating and will be dealt with accordingly.
  • For written homework, you must write up your own solutions and may neither read nor copy another student's solutions.
  • For programs, you must create and type in your own code and document it yourself. Note that you are free to seek help while debugging a program once it is written.
A good analogy between appropriate discussion and inappropriate collaboration is the following: you and a fellow student work for competing software companies developing different products to meet a given specification. You and your competitor might choose to discuss product specifications and general techniques employed in your products, but you certainly would not discuss or exchange proprietary information revealing details of your products. Ask the instructor or a teaching assistant for clarification beforehand if the above rules are not clear.

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Department of Computer Science
University of California at Davis
Davis, CA 95616-8562

Page last modified on 9/30/99