CS 88S: Safety in the Cloud - Introduction to Cybersecurity

* UCLA's Beat 'SC Bonfire. Notice the sheer number of students recording the event and sharing with their friends in real time. In our current world, the internet has connected everyone, but this also introduces new problems regarding online safety.

Quarter   Spring 2017
Instructor   Frank Chen
Lecture   Tuesdays 11-11:50 AM | BH 5419
Webpage   http://kfrankc.com/cs88s | Discussion on Hacker News
Faculty Mentor   Prof. Peter Reiher
Office Hours   No fixed OH; Email me and we can work something out!

" Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.

Nelson Mandela


This course is an preliminary introduction to the field of cybersecurity. We will study a variety of topics that are important for a regular consumer of technology. This course has great relevance in our current society: cyber attacks and data leaks are becoming more mainstream. A shared belief in the journalism field is that "nothing is more important to democracy than an educated electorate"; the same can be said for education in cybersecurity. It is more important than ever for everyone to be cybersecurity-aware.

Note: This class does not require any background knowledge in programming or computer science, and is open to all students; my goal is to give everyone an opportunity to be cybersecurity-aware in our growing internet-connected world!

Link to Course Syllabus

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(This is for anyone not enrolled but interested in following along with the course)

Course Schedule

* Each week's slides will be put on the website after class!

Week 1   Introduction & Motivations for the Class

  Why is cybersecurity so important?
Everything you need to know about Congress’ decision to expose your data to internet providers
This is why you should update your iPhone today
Week 2   Hacking in Popular Culture

  CS 88S on Hacker News
Immaculate perception: Jerry Kang at TEDxSanDiego 2013
A Hospital Paralyzed by Hackers
Week 3   Phishing, Social Engineering, Various malwares

  Google Translate used by spammers to bypass Anti-Spam filters
Amazon’s customer service backdoor
The MySpace Worm that Changed the Internet Forever
Week 4   Password, Authentication, Password Managers

  So, You Want to See Some Strong Passwords?
Cracking eHarmony's Unsalted Hashes with CrackStation
Should you should use a password manager?
Week 5   Web Browsing, Encryptions, VPNs

  DNS Explained
Public-key Cryptography Analogy
VPNs for Beginners - What you need to know
Week 6   Protecting yourself: apps, methods, practices

  Final Project Spec
Check if a site's connection is secure
What constitutes a strong password?
Week 7   Your Data in the Cloud

  How Europe Protects Your Online Data Differently Than the U.S.
Amazon Go is about way more than groceries
The bright side of sitting in traffic: Crowdsourcing road congestion data
Week 8   Symantec Tech Talk

  Microsoft Issues WanaCrypt Patch for Windows 8, XP
What is Ransomeware? A Guide To The Global Cyberattack's Scary Method
Symantec's Summary of WannaCry
Week 9   Cybersecurity and the Internet of Things (IoT)

  Black Hat 2015: Jeep Cherokee Hack Explained
A Murder Case Tests Alexa’s Devotion to Your Privacy
Mirai “internet of things” malware from Krebs DDoS attack goes open source
Week 10   Privacy, US Government, Future of Cybersecurity

  Apple's FBI Battle is Complicated. Here's What's Really Going On
Harvard Rescinds Acceptances for At Least Ten Students for Obscene Memes
Harvard withdraws 10 acceptances for ‘offensive’ memes in private group chat


Class participation. Participation is extremely important for acquiring knowledge in this course! I always welcome questions and any other input from you—your active participation in this course will enhance your learning experience and that of the other students. Ask my anything, anytime.

Academic honesty. The students are expected to fully abide by UCLA's student conduct policies, including Section 102.01 on academic honesty. You will find a wealth of helpful materials here, including the Use of Copyrighted Material. Academic dishonesty will be promptly reported to the Dean of Students' Office for adjudication and disciplinary action.

***website design inspired by Prof. Alexander Sherstov's CS 181 website.

Copyright © 2017 Frank Chen. All rights reserved.