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Computers and security

The purpose of this week's exercise is to refresh your memory about the security concepts learned in the Network and System Administration I course. If you spend time to review this now, it will make things easier later. Another purpose of this week is to show you how the course exercises work. Each week, there will be two parts to the exercises:

Self-test problems

Use self-test questions as a way of checking your own understanding. Self-test problems are optional, and are not graded.
  1. Is a good graphical user interface an appropriate criterion for buying a security product?
  2. Suppose you are starting a new business which deals with a secret new technology. Describe, in overview, how you would design a secure work environment for the company. Think of physical issues, software issues and work practices.
  3. How would you use the Unix find command to find files which were writable by anyone? How would you use cfengine to do this?

Graded problems

Graded parts of the problems are the parts you will receive credit for. Since there is no written exam, you will be asked to submit project work and answer questions electronically. All graded problems are compulsory (obligatory).

This course is based on continual assessment. Some of it will be based on questions answered on the web, and some of it will be based on project work. You will submit project work electronically.

For each piece of work you have contributed to, you will receive a grade. You final grade will be based on a weighted sum of these individual grades. You will have the opportunity to study and evaluate this system in a future exercise.

  1. Part of the work in this course can be carried out in groups (max 4 persons), but part of it, you will have to answer yourself. Find yourself a group to work with. you do not have to work with the same group all the time, but you can only be a member of one group per assignment.
    Any graded work which is not an individual on-line test, should be documented as project work. You should organize the project work by answering the numbered questions in the weekly exercises. Any additional information you wish to provide, on your own initiative, can be organized as you see fit. Part of the point about project work is that your project will be a useful document to you in the future.

    Projects will be submitted electronically as .DOC or .PDF files. The first part will be submitted in week 7, the second part will be submitted near the end of the course. You should complete every exercise in the week it is set. Late work cannot be accepted!!!

  2. This week, we begin with a short test, to give you a taste of the procedure for answering certain problems electronically. Everyone must complete this problem individually:
    Multiple choice test - (weight 1)

    • -What is a firewall?

      A new disk drive technology, used mainly on MacIntosh..
      A single point of access control for traffic to and from local area networks.
      A secure policy book for C2 compliance.
      Physical protection for disks against fire?

    • -What does redundancy mean?

      Multiple backups.
      A shield against network traffic?
      Attacks on servers replayed from legitimate recordings of usage.
      Removing users' rights to the system.

    • -TCP wrappers?

      Access control for wireless broadcasts.
      Access control for connection oriented services.
      Twisted C-pair network cables, shielded against sniffing.
      Tape Coated with Plastic (for secure storage)

    • -What is a SYN flood?

      A denial of service attack on TCP buffers.
      An attack on Linux.
      An virus attack on Windows NT.

    • -What is social engineering?

      Designing secure user interfaces.
      Manipulation of users to bypass security.
      Hairstyle management.

    • -What does DMZ stand for?

      The DeoxyMilo Azid (virus)
      De-Militarized Zone - firewall concept.
      A Zip Drive backup system.
      UK Driving license authority.

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