Network Security and Secure Communication

Implementing a secure networked application can be difficult, even for developers who may have used various cryptographic building blocks (such as encryption and digital signatures) beforehand. In order to make the participants understand the role and usage of these cryptographic primitives, first a solid foundation on the main requirements of secure communication – secure acknowledgement, integrity, confidentiality, remote identification and anonymity – is given, while also presenting the typical problems that may damage these requirements along with real-world solutions.

As a critical aspect of network security is cryptography, the most important cryptographic algorithms in symmetric cryptography, hashing, asymmetric cryptography, and key agreement are also discussed. Instead of presenting an in-depth mathematical background, these elements are discussed from a developer’s perspective, showing typical use-case examples and practical considerations related to the use of crypto, such as public key infrastructures. Security protocols in many different areas of secure communication are introduced, with an in-depth discussion on the most widely-used protocol families such as IPSEC and SSL/TLS.

Typical crypto vulnerabilities are discussed both related to certain crypto algorithms and cryptographic protocols, such as BEAST, CRIME, TIME, BREACH, FREAK, Logjam, Padding oracle, Lucky Thirteen, POODLE and similar, as well as the RSA timing attack. In each case, the practical considerations and potential consequences are described for each problem, again, without going into deep mathematical details.

Finally, as XML technology is central for data exchange by networked applications, the security aspects of XML are described. This includes the usage of XML within web services and SOAP messages alongside protection measures such as XML signature and XML encryption – as well as weaknesses in those protection measures and XML-specific security issues such as XML injection, XML external entity (XXE) attacks, XML bombs, and XPath injection.


Network Engineers and Developers

Course Objectives

Participants attending this course will:

§ Understand basic concepts of security, IT security and secure coding

§ Understand the requirements of secure communication

§ Learn about network attacks and defenses at different OSI layers

§ Have a practical understanding of cryptography

§ Understand essential security protocols

§ Understand some recent attacks against cryptosystems

§ Get information about some recent related vulnerabilities

§ Understand security concepts of Web services

§ Learn about XML security

§ Get sources and further readings on secure coding practices


§ Network engineering

§ Basic software development


§ IT security and secure coding

§ Requirements of secure communication

§ Network security

§ Practical cryptography

§ Security protocols

§ Cryptographic vulnerabilities

§ Security of Web services

§ XML security

§ Knowledge sources