Tuesday/Thursday 12:00PM - 1:20PM (Online)
Amir Masoumzadeh (amasoumzadeh@albany.edu)
  • Office Hours: Friday 10am–12pm, or by appointment
Teaching Assistant

Course Overview

This course introduces students to the fundamental and technical problems surrounding computer security. The course reviews basic security concepts, design principles, and mechanisms. Throughout the course and based on hands-on exercises, students will develop an in-depth understanding of several vulnerabilities and corresponding countermeasures in system security, web security, and network security areas. Topics include privilege escalation, buffer overflow, race condition, SQL injection, cross-site scripting, packet spoofing, TCP attacks, and firewalls.

Learning Goals for Students

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to


CSI 333 or ECE 233 (formerly ECE 333).

Additional Notes: You are expected to have a good understanding of operating systems and systems programming. You need to be familiar with Linux command line interface and be able to code in C. Also, general knowledge of discrete math and networking can be helpful.


Required Textbook: Wenliang Du, “Computer & Internet Security: A Hands-on Approach (2nd Edition),” ISBN-13: 978-1733003933, 2019.

Communication and Submissions

The course syllabus and schedule is available on the course webpage. Most of the tasks in this class will be handled via Blackboard including distribution of notes and homework assignments, assignment submission, and grading.

Assessment and Grading

The course is A-E graded based on the following categories and corresponding weights:

Homework/Lab Assignments
These will be about 11 take-home lab assignments (the lowest grade will be dropped).
There will be a midterm and a final exam.
Final Grade
It will be a weighted combination depending on which section of the class you are taking:
Course Labs Project Midterm Exam Final Exam
CSI 424 50% Optional (+10%) 25% 25%
CSI 524 30% 20% 25% 25%


The following schedule is tentative and will be regularly updated. It is your responsibility to check the schedule regularly.



No Late Submission
Assignments will be released about a week before their due date. You are highly recommended to study an assignment as soon as it becomes available. There will be ample opportunities to benefit from office hours and communication with me and the TA before the due date. Assignment are due 11:59pm on the day specified in the homework. Submissions after due time will receive no points.
Review of Grades
Any issue regarding your grade in a specific assignment must be communicated to us no later than 5 business days after posting day of the grades. There will be no re-grading after the 5-day period has passed.

You can also review your graded midterm exam paper either after class or at the office hours for a 5-day period after grades are announced. It is not possible to re-grade your paper after the end of that period.

Attending Lectures
Attendance will be taken in lectures. Your absence will be excused if approved by Student Health Services (see medical excuse policy). You should notify the instructor of your absence due to religious observance in advance. Note that even though some of the material covered in class may not appear on the lecture slides, you are responsible for all materials covered in lectures. It is your responsibility to find out the material covered in a lecture you missed.

Please do not disrupt the class by entering late or leaving early without instructor’s approval.

Attending Exams
Midterm exam is given in regular hours of the class. Exam dates are given in the course schedule, and there will be usually reminders about them in the lectures. Makeup exams will be given only for valid and verifiable extenuating circumstances (e.g., a major medical situation). It is the student’s responsibility to contact the instructor at least a week ahead of the exam date and arrange to take a makeup exam at an alternate date/time. Makeup exams are not guaranteed and will be generally harder than the regular exams.
Academic Integrity
It is every student’s responsibility to become familiar with the standards of academic integrity at the University. Claims of ignorance, of unintentional error, or of academic or personal pressures are not sufficient reasons for violations of academic integrity. Any incident of academic dishonesty can result in (i) no credit for the affected assignment, (ii) report to the appropriate University authorities (e.g., Dean of Undergraduate Education or Graduate Studies), and/or (iii) a failing grade for the course.

For all assignments and papers, you must submit your own work, except where collaboration is explicitly permitted or required. Also, you must properly cite any resources from which you borrow ideas and clearly distinguish them from your contributions.

Use of Electronic Devices
Computers or other electronic devices may be only used during class for note-taking, in-class exercises, or other class-related activities. You are not allowed to perform any unrelated task during class.
Students with Disabilities
Reasonable accommodation will be provided for students with documented disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring accommodation in this class, please notify the Disability Resource Center (Campus Center 130, 518-442-5490). That office will provide me with verification of your disability, and will recommend appropriate accommodations. In general, it is your responsibility to contact me at least one week before the relevant activity to make arrangements.