Research

As well as videogames I carry out research in computer security. The ever increasing dependence of society on computers and the information they store and transmit creates an equal importance of the security of systems and data. A system is only as valuable as it is secure. Most of this work is done as part of the Distributed Systems and Network Security Research group at Macquarie University under the leadership of Prof. V. Varadharajan.

Within the broad area of Computer Security most of my work concentrates on authorisation (or access control), trust and network security protocols. Authorisation determines what a user or other entity is able to do within a system. Trust examines issues of how confident one entity should be in whether another will carry out an action. Network security protocols provide the structure for communication between entities

Past Projects include:

  • Examining the common basic models of access control (such as the access control matrix, capabilities, role based access control and lattice based access control) and establishing a formalism which encompasses them all. A grand unified theory of access control, if you like.
  • The Tower language for access control. This language was aimed at giving users who are not experts in security the ability to flexibly express access control policies. It also looked at access control for XML data stores.
  • Access control for web services. With the growing use of the web, authorisation is an improtant issues
  • Current projects include:

  • Access control for the cloud. This project is looking at the use of cruptographic based mechanisms to enable users to place information in the cloud in a way that both lets them control access to it and prevents the cloud provider from accessing the information
  • Forensices and privacy. This project is examining the ramifications of computer forensic techniques for user privacy in social networking. If the mechansisms used to forensically analyse computer systems are turned on the information avilable in social media, just how much information do users inadvertantly reveal?
  • I have supervised 13 honours students, most of whose projects were in the area of security, and the following research students:

    1. Masters(Hons) (completed) Shankaran, Rajan, Asynchronous Transfer Mode Security, University of Western Sydney (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    2. PhD (completed) Indrakanti, Sarath, Webservices Security, Macquarie University (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    3. PhD (completed) Saunders, Greg, Access Control: Models and Methods, University of Sydney
    4. PhD (completed) Shankaran, Rajan, Security Issues in Mobile IP and Mobile Ad Hoc Networks, University of Western Sydney (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    5. PhD (completed) Tychsen, Anders, Play Story, Macquarie University
    6. PhD (completed) Nagarajan, Aarthi, Trusted Computing, Macquarie University (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    7. PhD (in progress) Patrickson, Bronwin, Video Games, Macquarie University (associate supervisor)
    8. PhD (in progress) Zhou, Lan, Access Control and the Cloud, Macquarie University (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    9. Masters(Hons) (in progress) Salama, Usama, Forensics and privacy, University of Western Sydney (co-supervised with Prof. V. Varadharajan)
    10. PhD (in progress) Ginige, Tamara , Social Networks, Macquarie University (associate supervisor)


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