Council on Academic Computing
January 19, 2005
Pennsylvania Cyber Security
Ray Hoare, from the Department of Electrical Engineering,
discussed his participation in the Pennsylvania Cyber Security
Commercialization Initiative (PaCSCI). The PaCSCI program was designed to support university
student teams as they commercialize their products and ideas. Participating
students are supported financially from the conceptual phase, when their cyber-security
ideas are hatched, to the research and development phase, when their product or
idea is refined. If the product or idea is successful, the program helps the
students form a Pennsylvania-based company.
Professor Hoare leads a team of students at the University of Pittsburgh.
Their project focuses upon virus protection and “network
immunization.” Current virus protection,
which is software-based, provides insufficient security because virus
definitions are updated too slowly. All
computers within a network will become infected if a single computer within the
network becomes infected. Professor
Hoare recommends immunizing computers collectively, i.e., at the level of the
network. His group is looking for cost-effective
and efficient solutions to this problem that can be embedded within switches
and routers. Professor Hoare’s powerpoint presentation
describes the project in greater detail.
Report from Computing
Services and Systems Development
Jinx Walton, Director of Computing Services
and Systems Development (CSSD), discussed general CSSD operations:
- The University’s voice
messaging system – Audix – will be upgraded in March. The upgrade will primarily benefit faculty
- A new teleconferencing
service has been established. The
service uses on-demand conferencing technology, so conference calls can be
held without advance notice.
- The University’s e-mail
software will be upgraded. The
usual service period during which e-mail is offline will be extended to
complete the upgrade.
- CSSD is offering its spam and
virus e-mail filtering service to departments. The service previously had been
available to individuals only.
- CSSD is investigating whether
a campus-wide wireless network can be established. Some localized wireless networks have
been established for students.
Other issues were also addressed:
- Future speakers for the
Council’s speakers program.
- A second program on modeling
- Department of Homeland
Security Centers of Excellence