Fred Schneider / A Doctrine of Public Cybersecurity / 10.31.17

Fred Schneider is the Samuel B. Eckert Professor of Computer Science at Cornell University and chair of the department. Schneider’s research has focused on various aspects of trustworthy systems — systems that will perform as expected, despite failures and attacks. His early work concerned formal methods to aid in the design and implementation of concurrent and distributed systems that satisfy their specifications. He is author of two texts on that subject:  On Concurrent Programming and (co-authored with D. Gries)A Logical Approach to Discrete Mathematics. He is also known for his research in theory and algorithms for building fault-tolerant distributed systems. His paper on the “state machine approach” for managing replication received (in 2007) an SOSP “Hall of Fame” award for seminal research. And his paper on fail-stop processors (with Richard Schlichting) received the Jean-Claude Laprie Award in Dependable Computing. More recently, his interests have turned to system security. His work characterizing what policies can be enforced with various classes of defenses is widely cited, and it is seen as advancing the nascent science base for security. He is also engaged in research concerning legal and economic measures for improving system trustworthiness.

Talk: “A Doctrine of Public Cybersecurity”

Abstract: With increasing dependence on networked computing systems comes increasing vulnerability.  The vulnerabilities are mostly technical in origin, but their remediation is not. Only by coupling technical insights with public policy do we stand a good chance to create a safer and more secure cyberspace. This talk will survey the landscape, discuss why past doctrines have failed, and propose a new doctrine of Public Cybersecurity. Applications to definitions and implementation of privacy will be discussed (Joint work with Deirdre Mulligan and Eleanor Birrell).

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