Home > Store

Computer Security: Principles and Practice

Register your product to gain access to bonus material or receive a coupon.

Computer Security: Principles and Practice


  • Sorry, this book is no longer in print.
Not for Sale



•  Comprehensive treatment of user authentication and access control.

Unified approach to intrusion detection and firewalls – Gives students a solid understanding of the threats and countermeasures.

More detailed coverage of software security than other texts – Provides sufficient material on an issue vital to a complete computer security strategy.

Exploration of management issues – Asserts that "soft" issues are just as important as technical defenses in computer security.

Systematic, comprehensive discussion of malicious software and denial of service attacks (the major threats to computer systems).

Coverage of Linux and Windows Vista – Addresses the most widely used operating systems.

Up-to-date coverage of database security.

Thorough overview of cryptography, authentication, and digital signatures – Provides a solid yet concise overview of the fundamental algorithms and techniques underlying network security.

Internet security – Coverage addresses network-based issues of importance for computer security.

• Companion Website -- Access textbook-related resources and support materials for students and instructors maintained by the author.

• Student Resource Site -- Access a wealth of computer science-related information including mathematics reviews, how-to documents, research resources, and career explorations maintained by the author.


Extensive use of case studies and examples – Provides real-world context to the text material.

Unparalleled support for including a projects component with the course – The Instructor's Manual not only includes guidance on how  to assign and structure the projects, but also includes a set of suggested projects that covers a broad range of topics from the text. Four types of projects are supported in the Instructor's Manual:

– Research Projects: A series of research assignments that instruct the student to research a particular topic on the Internet and write a report.

– Hacking assignments: A series of hacking problems for the student to experiment with.

– Reading/Report Assignments: A list of papers in the literature, one for each chapter, that can be assigned for the student to read and then write a short report.

– Writing Assignments: A list of suggested writing assignments

• A text-specific web page for student and instructor support, including:

– Links to important sites, organized according to the chapters of the book, so that the student can visit sites related to the material currently being studied to get up-to-date and supplementary information.

– Links to course pages by professors teaching from the book. This can give other instructors useful ideas.

– Transparency masters of figures and tables from the book in PDF (Adobe Acrobat) format.

– An errata sheet for the book.

– A set of PowerPoint slides for use in lecturing

– A set of course notes in PDF that can be used as a  handout.

– An Internet mailing list that enables instructors using the book to exchange information, suggestions, and questions with each other and the author. Sign-up information for the mailing list is provided at the web site.

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.


  • Copyright 2008
  • Edition: 1st
  • Book
  • ISBN-10: 0-13-600424-5
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-13-600424-0

<>Computer Security: Principles and Practice

William Stallings and Lawrie Brown

A thorough, up-to-date survey of the entire discipline of computer security.

Security experts William Stallings and Lawrie Brown provide a comprehensive survey of computer security threats, technical approaches to the detection and prevention of security attacks, software security issues, and management issues.

Throughout, the authors focus on core principles, showing how they unify the field of computer securuity and demonstrating their applications in real-world systems and networks. They examine alternate design approaches to meeting security requirements and illuminate the standards that are central to today's security solutions.

Ideal for both academic and professional audiences, Computer Security offers exceptional clarity, careful organization, and extensive pedagogical support - including hundreds of carefully crafted practice problems.


  • Security technologies and principles, including cryptography, authentication, and access control
  • Threats and countermeasures, from detecting intruders to countering DOS attacks
  • Trusted computing and multilevel security
  • Secure software: avoiding buffer overflows, malicious input, and other weaknesses
  • Linux and Windows security models
  • Managing security: physical security, training, audits, policies, and more
  • Computer crime, intellectual property, privacy, and ethics
  • Cryptographic algorithms, including public-key cryptography
  • Internet security: SSL, TLS, IP security, S/MIME, Kerberos, X.509, and federatetd identity management


  • Strong coverage of unifying principles and design techniques
  • Dozens of figures and tables that clarify key concepts
  • Field-tested homework problems
  • Extensive Web support at WilliamStallings.com/CompSec/CompSec1e.html
  • Keyword/acronym lists, recommended readings, and glossary

About the Authors

William Stallings has won the Best Computer Science and Engineering Textbook award seven times. His Prentice Hall books include Operating Systems; Cryptography and Network Security; and Data and Computer Communications. Stallings consults widely with technology providers, customers, and researchers. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from MIT. Dr. Lawrie Brown is Senior Lecturer at the School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering at the University of New South Wales at the Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, Australia.

Comprehensive Web support at WilliamStallings.com

Sample Content

Online Sample Chapters

Computer Security and Statistical Databases

Introduction to Network-Based Intrusion Detection Systems

Role-Based Access Control in Computer Security

Table of Contents

Notation Preface Chapter 0 Reader's and Instructor's Guide

0.1  Outline of the Book

0.2 A Roadmap for Readers and Instructors

0.3 Internet and Web Resources

0.4  Standards

Chapter 1 Overview

1.1 Computer Security Concepts

1.2 Threats, Attacks, and Assets

1.3  Security Functional Requirements

1.4 A Security Architecture for Open Systems

1.5 The Scope of Computer Security

1.6 Computer Security Trends

1.7  Computer Security Strategy

1.8  Recommended Reading and Web Sites

1.9  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 1A   Signficant Security Standards and Documents


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 and Web Sites

2.8  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 3 User Authentication

3.1 Means of Authentication

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 and Web Sites

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  Case Study: RBAC System for a Bank

4.7  Recommended Reading and Web Sites

4.8  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 5 Database Security

5.1  Relational Databases

5.2  Database Access Control

5.3  Inference

5.4  Statistical Databases

5.5  Database Encryption

5.6  Recommended Reading

5.7  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 6 Intrusion Detection

6.1  Intruders

6.2  Intrusion Detection

6.3  Host-Based Intrusion Detection

6.4  Distributed Host-Based Intrusion Detection

6.5  Network-Based Intrusion Detection

6.6  Distributed Adaptive Intrusion Detection

6.7  Intrustion Detection Exchange Format

6.8  Honeypots

6.9  Example System: Snort

6.10 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

6.11 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 6A:The Base-Rate Fallacy

Chapter 7 Malicious Software

7.1  Types of Malicious Software

7.2  Viruses

7.3  Virus Countermeasures

7.4  Worms

7.5  Bots

7.6  Rootkits

7.7  Recommended Reading and Web Sites

7.8  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 8 Denial of Service

8.1  Denial of Service Attacks

8.2  Flooding Attacks

8.3  Distributed Denial of Service Attacks

8.4  Reflector and Amplifier Attacks

8.5  Defenses Against Denial of Service Attacks

8.6  Responding to a Denial of Service Attack

8.7  Recommended Reading and Web Sites

8.8  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 9 Firewalls and Intrusion Prevention Systems

9.1  The Need for Firewalls

9.2  Firewall Characteristics

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 and Web Sites

9.9  Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 10    Trusted Computing and Multilevel Security

10.1 The Bell-LaPadula Model for Computer Security

10.2 Other Formal Models for Computer Security

10.3 The Concept of Trusted Systems

10.4 Application of Multilevel Security

10.5 Trusted Computing and the Trusted Platform Module

10.6 Common Criteria for Information Technology Security Evaluation

10.7 Assurance and Evaluation

10.8 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

10.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

PART TWO  SOFTWARE SECURITY Chapter 11    Buffer Overflow

11.1    Stack Overflows

11.2    Defending Against Buffer Overflows

11.3    Other Forms of Overflow Attacks

11.4    Recommended Reading and Web Sites

11.5    Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 12    Other Software Security Issues

12.1    Software Security Issues

12.2    Handling Program Input

12.3    Writing Safe Program Code

12.4    Interacting with the Operating System

12.5    Handling Program Input

12.6    Recommended Reading and Web Sites

12.7    Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

PART THREE    MANAGEMENT ISSUES Chapter 13    Physical and Infrastructure Security

13.1 Overview

13.2 Physical Security Threats

13.3 Physical Security Prevention and Mitigation Measures

13.4 Recovery from Physical Security Breaches

13.5 Threat Assessment, Planning, and Plan Implementation

13.6 Example: A Corporate Physical Security Policy.

13.7 Integration of Physical and Logical Security

13.8 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

13.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 14    Human Factors

14.1 Security Awareness, Training, and Education

14.2 Organizational Security Policy

14.3 Employment Practices and Policies

14.4   E-Mail and Internet Use Policies

14.5 Example: A Corporate Security Policy Document

14.6 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

14.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 14A: Security Awareness Standard of Good Practice

Appendix 14B: Security Policy Standard of Good Practice

Chapter 15    Security Auditing

15.1 Security Auditing Architecture

15.2 The Security Audit Trail

15.3   Implementing the Logging Function

15.4 Audit Trail Analysis

15.5 Example: An Integrated Approach

15.6 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

15.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 16    IT Security Management and Risk Assessment

16.1   IT Security Management

16.2 Organizational Context and Security Policy

16.3 Security Risk Assessment

16.4 Detailed Security Risk Analysis

16.5 Case Study: Silver Star Mines

16.6 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

16.7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 17    IT Security Controls, Plans and Procedures

17.1   IT Security Management Implementation

17.2 Security Controls or Safeguards

17.3 IT Security Plan

17.4 Implementation of Controls

17.5 Implementation Followup

17.6 Case Study: Silver Star Mines

17.7 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

17.8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 18    Legal and Ethical Aspects

18.1   Cybercrime and Computer Crime

18.2 Intellectual Property

18.3 Privacy

18.4 Ethical Issues

18.5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

18.6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 18A: Information Privacy Standard of Good Practice

PART FOUR  CRYPTOGRAPHIC ALGORITHMS Chapter 19    Symmetric Encryption and Message Confidentiality

19.1 Symmetric Encryption and Message Confidentiality

19.2 Data Encryption Standard

19.3 Advanced Encryption Standard

19.4 Stream Ciphers and RC4

19.5 Cipher Block Modes of Operation

19.6 Location of Symmetric Encryption Devices

19.7 Key Distribution

19.8 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

19.9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 20    Public-Key Cryptography and Message Authentication

20.1 Secure Hash Functions

20.2 HMAC

20.3 The RSA Public-Key Encryption Algorithm

20.4 Diffie-Hellman and Other Asymmetric Algorithms

20.5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

20.6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

PART FIVE INTERNET SECURITY Chapter 21    Internet Security Protocols and Standards

21.1 Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) and Transport Layer Security (TLS)

21.2 IPv4 and IPv6 Security

21.3 Secure Email and S/MIME

21.4 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

21.5 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Appendix 21A Radix-64 Conversion

Chapter 22    Internet Authentication Applications

22.1 Kerberos

22.2 X.509

22.3 Public-Key Infrastructure

22.4 Federated Identity Management

22.5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites

22.6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems


23.1    Introduction

23.2    Linux's Security Model

23.3    The Linux DAC in Depth: Filesystem Security

23.4    Linux Vulnerabilities

23.5    Linux System Hardening

23.6    Application Security

23.7    Mandatory Access Controls

23.8    Recommended Reading and Web Sites

23.9    Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems

Chapter 24    Windows Security

–Windows Overview

–Windows Security Basics

–Windows User Security

–Windows Network Security

APPENDICES Appendix A  Some Aspects of Number Theory

A.1 Prime and Relatively Prime Numbers

A.2  Modular Arithmetic

A.3  Fermat's and Euler's Theorems

Appendix B  Random and Pseudorandom Number Generation

B.1 The Use of Random Numbers

B.2 Pseudorandom Number Generators (PRNGs)

B.3 True Random Number Generators

Appendix  C Projects for Teaching Computer Security

C.1    Research Projects

C.2 Programming Projects

C.3 Laboratory Exercises

C.4 Writing Assignments

C.5    Reading/Report Assignments

REFERENCES INDEX LIST OF ACRONYMS ONLINE APPENDICES Appendix D   Standards and Standard-Setting Organizations

    A.1 The Importance of Standards

       A.2    Internet Standards and the Internet Society

       A.3    National Institute of Standards and Technology

       A.4    ITU-T

       A.5    ISO

Appendix E TCP/IP Protocol Architecture Appendix F Glossary


Submit Errata

More Information

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information

To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.


Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.


If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information

Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information

Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents

California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure

Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact

Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice

We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020