Student Projects

Sample Student Projects

Note: Student names are removed for their privacy. Only abstracts of projects and papers are shown to protect intellectual property.

INFS3231 Fall 2018 Sample Network Technology Project  
Title: Device Authentication: Harmonizing Cisco ISE and IEEE 802.1x
ABSTRACT: This paper discusses authentication issues with Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) and presents several possible solutions. Cisco ISE is a network administrative product used on a university campus to control network access by authenticating users’ devices. However, since deployment, users have noted issues such as improper device authentication, registration failure, and loss of access to the network. The identified cause of many of these authentication issues stem from the IEEE 802.1x architecture. Devices that are not 802.1x capable are having difficulty being authenticated. These devices are typically older, outdated technology, gaming consoles, and routers. Some of the solutions discussed in this paper include ensuring users are properly registered with the network and using MAC Authentication Bypass as an alternative. The benefits and limitations of existing solutions are also reviewed and presented, which is followed by a proposed solution describing what can be done to best resolve these problems. 

INFS3235 Fall 2018 Sample Network Security Team Project 
Title: DDoS Attack on Amazon: Impact and Solutions
ABSTRACT: This project report discusses Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, the potential impact on a large company such as Amazon, and the solutions that can be used to avoid and mitigate the incident. Over two-thirds of companies have been victims of DDoS attacks, which continue to grow in popularity, especially with the rise in IoT devices.  Based on research of Amazon’s current revenue, a DDoS attack lasting just thirty minutes would result in the company losing over $3.5 million dollars in the down time (Zixit, 2013), along with an incalculable hit to customer rapport.  Solutions to DDoS attacks include creating a reasonable disaster recovery plan consisting of a system checklist, threat identification, assessment, and filtering tools, along with a designated team to respond to these concerns.  Intrusion detection and protection services should also be implemented to monitor and mitigate attacks.  By following these cautionary steps, Amazon could lower the effects of DDoS attacks and ensure the safety and security of the company’s critical assets.

INFS3235 Fall 2018 Sample Network Security Project 
Title: The Mirai Botnet & the Importance of IoT Device Security
ABSTRACT: In September of 2016, the Mirai Botnet appeared as a new threat on the Internet and launched crippling Distributed Denial of Service Attacks (DDoS) against several high-profile targets. The Mirai Botnet took advantage of the weak security on Internet of Things (IoT) devices and used them as a means to launch the DDoS attacks. The severity of these attacks awakened the technology industry to the lack of security for IoT devices. The use of IoT devices is expanding rapidly, creating an increasingly large attack surface for threats similar to Mirai. Multiple technology organizations have since been working to develop standards to push manufacturers to emphasize security on their devices and implement new technologies to improve security for consumers and enterprises. This project examines the Mirai Botnet and its security impacts on IoT devices and proposes comprehensive countermeasures and IoT security solutions. 

INFS3235 Summer 2018 Sample Team Project
Title: Cybersecurity Attacks on Hospitals
ABSTRACT: Cybersecurity attacks are on the rise. The purpose of this research project is to identify two of the many types of cyber-attacks, explain their methods, the impact they have on hospitals and the solutions that should be taken to minimize the risk of successful attacks. Ransomware, a deceiving type of malware, is one of the most frequently seen attacks in the healthcare world today. Spear-phishing, directed specifically toward users, has become a common and easy way for attackers to target organizations. The consequences associated with these attacks can be catastrophic to an organization in several ways. The solutions portion of this paper will provide information regarding prevention, detection and response to these attacks. Although cyberattacks are not entirely avoidable, there are many preventative measures that can be taken to minimize the risks.

INFS3235 Summer 2018 Sample Term Paper
Title: Ransomware WannaCry
ABSTRACT: Ransomware has become a significant concern over the past couple of years. The most notable ransomware attacks in the last three years are WannaCry, ptrwrap, notpetya. In this paper we are going to discuss the transgressions of WannaCry attack, why ransomware is profitable, the origins of ransomware ‘WannaCry’ from ‘Eternal Blue’, the impacts of ransomware on the organization and the country, the mode of attack ransomware attack uses to penetrate the network, how we can mitigate these vulnerabilities, exploits and threats. WannaCry majorly impacted hospitals in the UK and disrupted the working conditions of healthcare system. This paper also outlines the importance of backups, creating awareness of cybersecurity and how it can help organizations that is affected get back on its feet. Investing into predictive analysis technology is also discussed in this report as it can potentially suppress the widespread impact of an attack and sometimes help prevent it from surfacing.

INFS3231 Spring 2018 Sample Network Project 1
Title: Man-in-the-Middle Attacks
ABSTRACT: Man-in-the-middle, or MITM attacks, are one of the most prevalent attacks on the cyber market at this point in time. This attack, although utilizing pieces of technology like a WiFi pineapple or even a switch, is primarily targeted towards the users of a system or institution. The ultimate goal is to retrieve information through social engineering schemes. This project will establish what issues exist, their significance, the security and reliability issues, and our proposal and methods to detect, diagnose and troubleshoot the man-in-the-middle attacks.

INFS3231 Spring 2018 Sample Network Project 2
Title: Wireless Connectivity Problems
ABSTRACT: The purpose of this project is to illustrate the many different issues that have the potential to interrupt and slow down wireless connections. For instance, Wi-Fi signals can degrade over distance, they can be absorbed and reflected by physical obstructions, they can be drowned out by non-physical radio and electromagnetic interference, crowded out at peak hours of usage, or there may be an issue with the router transmitting the Wi-Fi signal such as the router overheating or being outdated. This paper addresses certain issues that can affect wireless capabilities. Upon closer examination of these problem, we present and examine different solutions to combat these problems. Proposed solutions are then offered for each of the issues outlined below. This research highlights the importance of troubleshooting to discover the true problem.

INFS3235 Spring 2018 Sample Term Paper 1
Title: Pharming: DNS cache poisoning & more
ABSTRACT: This paper discusses Pharming and the means in which this kind of attack is completed, such as DNS cache poisoning, modification of host files to change how the device connects servers to particular domain names, and DNS server hacking. The differentiation between Pharming and Phishing is also discussed. Pharming requires much more expertise in technology because this attack does not involve the user’s consent but rather illegal, unauthorized modification to send the user to a site that is malicious while phishing is successful because of social engineering. The ways that this attack can be prevented include updating your DNS server, having security software for your DNS, having antivirus software on devices to prevent host files from being altered by an attack, and resetting DNS cache every so often to prevent terminal effects of a cache poisoning. Examples of each pharming attack type will be demonstrated through images and descriptive walkthroughs that will explain which version is most common and why.

INFS3235 Spring 2018 Sample Term Paper 2
Title: SYN Flood Attack
ABSTRACT: SYN flood attack refers to a service denial attack that utilizes the network weaknesses and bridges to interfere with the service delivery. It attacks most of the systems especially those that depend on the TCP/IP. The attack utilizes SYN request and sends it frequently to the server for purposes of consuming the server’s asset thus denying other uses from carrying out the legitimate services. The servers that are usually protected by the firewall are most likely to be affected by the SYN flood attack. In this paper, we suggest a simple solution for mitigating the attacks from SYN flooding. Just as the firewall works, we also detect the attack by using the router that connects the server to the internet. The detection mechanisms are stateless and maintain a low computation overhead making it immune to the SYN flood attack. We utilize the TCP SYN-FIN behavior of the protocol to effectively detect the attacks. This paper focuses on how the DDoS SYN attacks are manifested and the appropriate solution for preventing the attack.

INFS3222 Fall 2017 Sample Team Project
Title: Starbucks Application Hacked
ABSTRACT: This project report will outline the breaching of the Starbucks application by hackers, which happened earlier this year (2017). The hackers gained access to user credentials in the form of logins/passwords and with this information they were able to hijack the user accounts. Once hijacked, the accounts granted the hackers the ability to steal money from the users in the form of gift cards bought with the user's stored credit card information, located within the Starbuck application. This breach could have easily have been prevented, and this paper will outline a few of these security techniques that should have been used.

INFS3222 Fall 2017 Sample Term Paper 1
Title: Palo Alto’s Next Generation Firewalls
ABSTRACT: This paper explores the fundamentals of Palo Alto Network’s line of next generation firewalls. These devices help redefine network security by providing defense at all seven layers of a computer network. Palo Alto’s next generation firewall combines reimagined networking hardware with various cybersecurity software tools to provide 100% visibility into data passing over a network. Traffic can now be filtered by source, destination, port, protocol, URL, user, time, and more. This tool also offers SSL decryption so threats cannot mask themselves inside encrypted tunnels connecting to your network. All these features can be configured and managed from a web interface that is capable of making changes to multiple firewalls across a network. This tool encompasses every area of network security into one innovative device. Network administrators now have access to one platform that offers security capabilities from endpoints to internet connections. A next generation firewall is essential in protecting any enterprise network.

INFS3222 Fall 2017 Sample Term Paper 2
Title: Burp Suite
ABSTRACT: This paper will give the reader an understanding of the integrated platform Burp Suite. Many organizations are in dire need of computer and network security. Security issues are an impediment to their day to day operations and can hinder the way they go about their business. Attackers find holes in the organizations network in turn siphoning out private data or stored funds. Preventative measures can be taken by the organization if Burp Suite is used. This suite has a variety of tools that work flawlessly together to support the entire process of penetration testing, which is key to figuring out where security holes are in a network. The suite is made up of many components such as intercepting proxy, spider, web scanner, intruder, repeater, sequencer and extensions along with the option to create a custom extension or download pre-made extensions. Burp Suite has many features, strengths, and limitations that will be discussed throughout this paper. After reading this paper, an organization should be able to make a decision whether or not they can utilize this software to improve their computer and network security. Doing so will greatly benefit the organization’s computer security outlook.

INFS3231 Fall 2017 Sample Network Project
Title: Wireless Networking Interference
ABSTRACT: Since there was a need to communicate with people over a distance, wireless networks have always existed. These networks can be as rudimentary as smoke signals to as modern as WLANs. Modern wireless networks rely upon the use of frequencies within the 2.4-GHz band. With so many devices relying upon the same relatively narrow frequencies to communicate, interference is a common problem. Developers have taken steps to ensure that their devices are at least somewhat protected from interference through the use of standard algorithms. However, the sheer volume of devices used today necessitates other steps be taken by the user. By activating certain self-healing services in a network with a master access point, the network can automatically assess local activity on the 2.4-GHz band and accommodate without compromising the user experience. This solution, while simple, becomes even more desirable when taking into consideration the fact that it can be implemented with preexisting equipment or with a very minimal additional investment.

INFS3235 Fall 2017 Sample Term Paper 1
Title: Preventing SQL Injection Attacks
ABSTRACT: SQL Injection is the act of injecting malicious SQL statements into text entry fields to either gain information on the schema, extract data, or add/modify data. Solutions to this vulnerability include: escaping certain characters before executing the query or using prepared statements. These solutions take place in the programming layer, I propose a solution that is integrated with the Database Management System itself, such as MySQL or Oracle. SQLSafe mode, would introduce limitations on the queries that are allowed to run in a production environment to help reduce the risk of the main SQL injection attack methods.

INFS4170 Fall 2017 Sample Term Paper 2
Title: Social Engineering: Taking Advantage of Ignorance
ABSTRACT: Social Engineering is becoming a huge part in our daily lives and the security concerns surrounding it are more of a concern now that it ever has been. Countless people fall victim to social engineering attacks every day and it can ruin their lives or even get them fired from their jobs. While there is a vast amount of social engineering attacks, they can all be 100% preventable and are actually very simple to avoid with a little knowledge on the topic. This paper will give examples and explain different types of social engineering attacks that can take place in a company or in a job setting and aims to ultimately inform the reader on how to detect and deter these attacks. Multiple reputable sources will be referenced in this paper with each of their own solutions to social engineering. This paper will touch upon many types of social engineering including phishing, spear phishing, pretexting, and finally, baiting. These are among the most used attack techniques that social engineers use to target people and this paper will help to aid in prevention, identify each one and how to avoid becoming a victim of the attacks.

INFS3222 Spring 2017 Sample Team Project
Title: An Analysis of the 2013 Target Breach
ABSTRACT: The Target data breach in 2013 has been hailed as one of the most prolific breaches of public records in the last decade. The Target Corporation, based out of Minneapolis, Minnesota, fell victim to hackers which were able to steal personal and credit card information of over 70 million Target shoppers during the holiday season of 2013. The hack was made possible by credentials that hackers obtained through a Target-hired HVAC contractor called Fazio Mechanical. An employee of Fazio fell victim to a phishing email that installed a Trojan-horse on their machine. This project explores the Target breach case, analyzes its impact and security failures, and proposes steps to take to mitigate and prevent such risks.

INFS3235 Fall 2016 Sample Term Paper
Title: Masque Attacks on iOS Devices
ABSTRACT: Mobile devices have become more and more popular recently, which means that mobile device attacks have become more popular as well. Between the two major retailers, Android and Apple, I will be focusing on Apple, specifically masque attacks on iOS mobile devices. A masque attack is when a hacker “substitutes malware for a legitimate iOS app under a limited set of circumstances.” (US-Cert, 2016). They trick the user into downloading an application from somewhere other than the App Store. Once it is downloaded, the user has to “trust” the application in order for anything to run. Once the user “trusts” the application, the attacker has access to any and every bit of information entered on that app. The majority of people save all passwords and usernames on different apps, so it wouldn’t be hard for the hacker to gain access. With this gained information, your identity can be stolen, money can be transferred out of your account, along with many other types of losses. My proposed solution to masque attacks is to implement a system where an application, when downloaded, will display a message saying whether or not you are downloading it from the App Store. This paper will illustrate the masque attacks and discuss the proposed solution.