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Computer Security: Principles and Practice, 3rd Edition


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Easily Integrate Projects in your Course
This book provides an unparalleled degree of support for including a projects component in the course. The Instructor's Manual not only includes guidance on how to assign and structure the projects, but also includes a set of user's manuals for various project types plus specific assignments, all written especially for this book. Instructors can assign work in the following areas:

  • Hacking exercises: Two projects that enable students to gain an understanding of the issues in intrusion detection and prevention.
  • Laboratory exercises: A series of projects that involve programming and experimenting with concepts from the book.
  • Security education (SEED) projects: The SEED projects are a set of hands-on exercises, or labs, covering a wide range of security topics.
  • Research projects: A series of research assignments that instruct the student to research a particular topic on the Internet and write a report.
  • Programming projects: A series of programming projects that cover a broad range of topics and that can be implemented in any suitable language on any platform.
  • Practical security assessments: A set of exercises to examine current infrastructure and practices of an existing organization.
  • Firewall projects: A portable network firewall visualization simulator is provided, together with exercises for teaching the fundamentals of firewalls.
  • Case studies: A set of real-world case studies, including learning objectives, case description, and a series of case discussion questions.
  • Reading/report assignments: A list of papers that can be assigned for reading and writing a report, plus suggested assignment wording.
  • Writing assignments: A list of writing assignments to facilitate learning the material.
  • Webcasts for teaching computer security: A catalog of webcast sites that can be used to enhance the course. An effective way of using this catalog is to select, or allow the student to select, one or a few videos to watch, and then to write a report/analysis of the video.

Keep Your Course Current with Updated Technical Content

  • NEW Fundamental security design principles: Chapter 1 includes a new section discussing the security design principles listed as fundamental by the National Centers of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense, which is jointly sponsored by the U.S. National Security Agency and the U. S. Department of Homeland Security.
  • NEW Attack surfaces and attack trees: Chapter 1 includes a new section describing these two concepts, which are useful in evaluating and classifying security threats.
  • NEW User authentication model: Chapter 3 includes a new description of a general model for user authentication, which helps to unify the discussion of the various approaches to user authentication.
  • NEW Attribute-based access control (ABAC): Chapter 4 has a new section devoted to ABAC, which is becoming increasingly widespread.
  • NEW Identity, credential, and access management (ICAM): Chapter 4 includes a new section on ICAM, which is a comprehensive approach to managing and implementing digital identities (and associated attributes), credentials, and access control.
  • NEW Trust frameworks: Chapter 4 includes a new section on the Open Identity Trust Framework, which is an open, standardized approach to trustworthy identity and attribute exchange that is becoming increasingly widespread.
  • NEW SQL injection attacks: Chapter 5 includes a new section on the SQL injection attack, which is one of the most prevalent and dangerous network-based security threats.
  • NEW Cloud security: The material on cloud security in Chapter 5 has been updated and expanded to reflect its importance and recent developments.
  • NEW Malware: The material on Malware, and on categories of intruders, has been revised to reflect the latest developments, including details of Advanced Persistent Threats, which are most likely due to nation state actors.
  • NEW Intrusion detection/intrusion prevention systems: The material on IDS/IPS has been updated to reflect new developments in the field, including the latest developments in Host-Based Intrusion Detection Systems that assist in implementing a defense-in-depth strategy.
  • NEW Human Resources: Security lapses due to human factors and social engineering are of increasing concern, including several recent cases of massive data exfiltration by insiders. Addressing such lapses requires a complex mix of procedural and technical controls, which we review in several significantly revised sections.
  • NEW Mobile device security: Mobile device security has become an essential aspect of enterprise network security, especially for devices in the category known as bring your own device (BYOD). A new section covers this important topic.
  • NEW SHA-3: This recently adopted cryptographic hash standard is covered in a new appendix.

Enhance Learning with Engaging Features

  • Extensive use of case studies and examples provides real-world context to the text material.
  • Numerous homework problems in a wide range of difficulty along with numerous review questions. An Instructor's Manual contains solutions to all problems and questions.
  • Extensive use of figures and tables to clarify concepts.
  • List of key words, recommended reading list, and recommended Web sites at the end of each chapter.
  • Glossary at the end of the book.
  • List of acronyms on back endpaper.

Provide Extensive Support Material to Instructors and Students

Instructor Resources
The major goal of this text is to make it as effective a teaching tool for this fundamental yet evolving subject as possible.

  • Instructor Resource Center (IRC): Access the following resources on the publisher’s Web site www.pearsonhighered.com/stallings:
    • Solutions manual: Solutions to end-of-chapter Review Questions and Problems.
    • Projects manual: Suggested projects that cover a broad range of topics.
    • PowerPoint slides: A set of slides covering all chapters, suitable for use in lecturing.
    • PDF files: Reproductions of all figures and tables from the book.
    • Test bank: A chapter-by-chapter set of questions with a separate file of answers.
    • Sample syllabuses: The text contains more material than can be conveniently covered in one semester. Accordingly, instructors are provided with several sample syllabuses that guide the use of the text within limited time. These samples are based on real-world experience by professors.
  • Companion Web site: Access the following resources on the Companion Web site, at http://www.williamstallings.com/ComputerSecurity/ (click on Instructor Resources link):
    • Links to Web sites for other courses being taught using this book.
    • Sign-up information for an Internet mailing list for instructors using this book to exchange information, suggestions, and questions with each other and with the author.

Student Support Materials

  • Companion Web site: A list of relevant links organized by chapter and an errata sheet for the book is located at http://www.williamstallings.com/ComputerSecurity/ (click on Student Resources link).
  • Premium Content site: Purchasing this textbook new also grants the reader six months of access to the Premium Content site. Click on the Premium Content link at the Companion Web site or at www.pearsonhighered.com/stallings and enter the student access code found on the card in the front of the book to access the following:
    • Online chapters: To limit the size and cost of the book, some chapters of the book are provided in PDF format.
    • Online appendices: There are numerous interesting topics that support material found in the text but whose inclusion is not warranted in the printed text. The online appendices cover these topics for the interested student.
    • Homework problems and solutions: To aid the student in understanding the material, a separate set of homework problems with solutions is available.


  • Copyright 2015
  • Dimensions: 7" x 9-1/8"
  • Pages: 848
  • Edition: 3rd
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-377392-2
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-377392-7

Computer Security: Principles and Practice, Third Edition, is ideal for courses in Computer/Network Security. It also provides a solid, up-to-date reference or self-study tutorial for system engineers, programmers, system managers, network managers, product marketing personnel, system support specialists.

In recent years, the need for education in computer security and related topics has grown dramatically—and is essential for anyone studying Computer Science or Computer Engineering. This is the only text available to provide integrated, comprehensive, up-to-date coverage of the broad range of topics in this subject. In addition to an extensive pedagogical program, the book provides unparalleled support for both research and modeling projects, giving students a broader perspective.

It covers all security topics considered Core in the EEE/ACM Computer Science Curriculum. This textbook can be used to prep for CISSP Certification, and includes in-depth coverage of Computer Security, Technology and Principles, Software Security, Management Issues, Cryptographic Algorithms, Internet Security and more.

The Text and Academic Authors Association named Computer Security: Principles and Practice, First Edition, the winner of the Textbook Excellence Award for the best Computer Science textbook of 2008.

Teaching and Learning Experience

This program presents a better teaching and learning experience—for you and your students. It will help:

  • Easily Integrate Projects in your Course: This book provides an unparalleled degree of support for including both research and modeling projects in your course, giving students a broader perspective.
  • Keep Your Course Current with Updated Technical Content: This edition covers the latest trends and developments in computer security.
  • Enhance Learning with Engaging Features: Extensive use of case studies and examples provides real-world context to the text material.
  • Provide Extensive Support Material to Instructors and Students: Student and instructor resources are available to expand on the topics presented in the text.

Sample Content

Table of Contents


Online Resources



About the Authors

Chapter 0 Guide for Readers and Instructors

0.1 Outline of This Book

0.2 A Roadmap for Readers and Instructors

0.3 Support for CISSP Certification

0.4 Support for NSA/DHS Certification

0.5 Support for ACM/IEEE Computer Science Curricula 2013

0.6 Internet and Web Resources

0.7 Standards

Chapter 1 Overview

1.1 Computer Security Concepts

1.2 Threats, Attacks, and Assets

1.3 Security Functional Requirements

1.4 Fundamental Security Design Principles

1.5 Attack Surfaces and Attack Trees

1.6 Computer Security Strategy

1.7 Recommended Reading

1.8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems


Chapter 2 Cryptographic Tools

2.1 Confidentiality with Symmetric Encryption

2.2 Message Authentication and Hash Functions

2.3 Public-Key Encryption

2.4 Digital Signatures and Key Management

2.5 Random and Pseudorandom Numbers

2.6 Practical Application: Encryption of Stored Data

2.7 Recommended Reading

2.8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 3 User Authentication

3.1 Electronic User Authentication Principles

3.2 Password-Based Authentication

3.3 Token-Based Authentication

3.4 Biometric Authentication

3.5 Remote User Authentication

3.6 Security Issues for User Authentication

3.7 Practical Application: An Iris Biometric System

3.8 Case Study: Security Problems for ATM Systems

3.9 Recommended Reading

3.10 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 4 Access Control

4.1 Access Control Principles

4.2 Subjects, Objects, and Access Rights

4.3 Discretionary Access Control

4.4 Example: UNIX File Access Control

4.5 Role-Based Access Control

4.6 Attribute-Based Access Control

4.7 Identity, Credential, and Access Management

4.8 Trust Frameworks

4.9 Case Study: RBAC System for a Bank

4.10 Recommended Reading

4.11 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 5 Database and Cloud Security

5.1 The Need for Database Security

5.2 Database Management Systems

5.3 Relational Databases

5.4 SQL Injection Attacks

5.5 Database Access Control

5.6 Inference

5.7 Database Encryption

5.8 Cloud Computing

5.9 Cloud Security Risks and Countermeasures

5.10 Data Protection in the Cloud

5.11 Cloud Security as a Service

5.12 Recommended Reading

5.13 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 6 Malicious Software

6.1 Types of Malicious Software

6.2 Advanced Persistent Threat

6.2 Propagation Infected Content - Viruses

6.3 Propagation Vulnerability Exploit - Worms

6.4 Propagation Social Engineering SPAM E-Mail, Trojans

6.5 Payload System Corruption

6.6 Payload Attack Agent Zombie, Bots

6.7 Payload Information Theft Keyloggers, Phishing, Spyware

6.8 Payload Stealthing Backdoors, Rootkits

6.9 Countermeasures

6.10 Recommended Reading

6.11 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 7 Denial-of-Service Attacks

7.1 Denial-of-Service Attacks

7.2 Flooding Attacks

7.3 Distributed Denial-of-Service Attacks

7.4 Application-Based Bandwidth Attacks

7.5 Reflector and Amplifier Attacks

7.6 Defenses Against Denial-of-Service Attacks

7.7 Responding to a Denial-of-Service Attack

7.8 Recommended Reading

7.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 8 Intrusion Detection

8.1 Intruders

8.2 Intrusion Detection

8.3 Analysis Approaches

8.4 Host-Based Intrusion Detection

8.5 Network-Based Intrusion Detection

8.6 Distributed or Hybrid Intrusion Detection

8.7 Intrusion Detection Exchange Format

8.8 Honeypots

8.9 Example System: Snort

8.10 Recommended Reading

8.11 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 9 Firewalls and Intrusion Prevention Systems

9.1 The Need for Firewalls

9.2 Firewall Characteristics and Access Policy

9.3 Types of Firewalls

9.4 Firewall Basing

9.5 Firewall Location and Configurations

9.6 Intrusion Prevention Systems

9.7 Example: Unified Threat Management Products

9.8 Recommended Reading

9.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems


Chapter 10 Buffer Overflow

10.1 Stack Overflows

10.2 Defending Against Buffer Overflows

10.3 Other Forms of Overflow Attacks

10.4 Recommended Reading

10.5 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 11 Software Security

11.1 Software Security Issues

11.2 Handling Program Input

11.3 Writing Safe Program Code

11.4 Interacting with the Operating System and Other Programs

11.5 Handling Program Input

11.6 Recommended Reading

11.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 12 Operating System Security

12.1 Introduction to Operating System Security

12.3 System Security Planning

12.3 Operating Systems Hardening

12.4 Application Security

12.5 Security Maintenance

12.6 Linux/UNIX Security

12.7 Windows Security

12.8 Virtualization Security

12.9 Recommended Reading

12.10 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 13 Trusted Computing and Multilevel Security

13.1 The Bell-LaPadula Model for Computer Security

13.2 Other Formal Models for Computer Security

13.3 The Concept of Trusted Systems

13.4 Application of Multilevel Security

13.5 Trusted Computing and the Trusted Platform Module

13.6 Common Criteria for Information Technology Security Evaluation

13.7 Assurance and Evaluation

13.8 Recommended Reading

13.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems


Chapter 14 IT Security Management and Risk Assessment

14.1 IT Security Management

14.2 Organizational Context and Security Policy

14.3 Security Risk Assessment

14.4 Detailed Security Risk Analysis

14.5 Case Study: Silver Star Mines

14.6 Recommended Reading

14.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 15 IT Security Controls, Plans and Procedures

15.1 IT Security Management Implementation

15.2 Security Controls or Safeguards

15.3 IT Security Plan

15.4 Implementation of Controls

15.5 Monitoring Risks

15.6 Case Study: Silver Star Mines

15.7 Recommended Reading

15.8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 16 Physical and Infrastructure Security

16.1 Overview

16.2 Physical Security Threats

16.3 Physical Security Prevention and Mitigation Measures

16.4 Recovery from Physical Security Breaches

16.5 Example: A Corporate Physical Security Policy

16.6 Integration of Physical and Logical Security

16.7 Recommended Reading

16.8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 17 Human Resources Security

17.1 Security Awareness, Training, and Education

17.2 Employment Practices and Policies

17.3 E-Mail and Internet Use Policies

17.4 Computer Security Incident Response Teams

17.5 Recommended Reading

17.6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 18 Security Auditing

18.1 Security Auditing Architecture

18.2 The Security Audit Trail

18.3 Implementing the Logging Function

18.4 Audit Trail Analysis

18.5 Example: An Integrated Approach

18.6 Recommended Reading

18.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 19 Legal and Ethical Aspects

19.1 Cybercrime and Computer Crime

19.2 Intellectual Property

19.3 Privacy

19.4 Ethical Issues

19.5 Recommended Reading

19.6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 19A: Information Privacy Standard of Good Practice


Chapter 20 Symmetric Encryption and Message Confidentiality

20.1 Symmetric Encryption and Message Confidentiality

20.2 Data Encryption Standard

20.3 Advanced Encryption Standard

20.4 Stream Ciphers and RC4

20.5 Cipher Block Modes of Operation

20.6 Location of Symmetric Encryption Devices

20.7 Key Distribution

20.8 Recommended Reading

20.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 21 Public-Key Cryptography and Message Authentication

21.1 Secure Hash Functions


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