Security and privacy research takes over KTH this summer
Smart and connected. That is how many would describe the sustainable society of the future. But if the vision is to become reality, system security and privacy needs to become better – quickly. This summer KTH hosts five events tackling these issues, inviting the best researchers from all over the world.
Placing important infrastructure and personal information such as electricity grid, patient records and soon autonomous transports in the cloud is the future. But it comes with a price. Development of new technology is fast, in fact it moves at the speed of light, and it places high demands on system protection. During June and July, KTH hosts five events on cyber security and privacy:
- IEEE European Symposium on Security , research conference
- Midnight Sun Capture the Flag , hacking competition
- Cyber Security and Privacy (CySeP) , summer school
- Tor project meeting
- Privacy and Privacy Enhancing Technologies Symposium (PETS 2019) , research conference
Panagiotis Papadimitratos, Professor in systems security, has been instrumental in bringing these events to KTH. He is involved in their organization or in hosting them.
Hi there Panagiotis Papadimitratos! Why is this topic important and why now?
"The more we rely on large-scale complex networked systems, the more vulnerable our everyday lives and businesses become. The more we use new applications and systems, the more information about our activities is leaked or willingly given away. Our societies will continue getting digitized. This will only increase the need to design and build secure and privacy preserving systems. This is far from trivial – there are many challenging security and privacy problems to address."
There are events on research to bachelor level. What are your hopes for these events?
"Indeed, the events are relevant and useful to security and privacy enthusiasts with different expertise levels. Each has its own character and provides a different path for the KTH, Stockholm, and Swedish communities to be involved. Our objectives, as in the recent past, are: to bring together the security and privacy communities in Sweden, connect industry and academia, have the international research and technical communities come to Stockholm, and put KTH under the spot light. This will promote synergies, bring presentations of the latest and hottest results and by leading researchers, and, of course, allow us, as KTH, to communicate we are doing some great work too. In addition, of course, all our partners and supporters get extensive exposure and opportunities to showcase their achievements."
Is it still possible to register for the events?
"Yes, for example, the CySeP deadline is May 27, but we will accommodate late registrations after that. For the IEEE EuroS&P: still ample time to register for any of the eight workshops and the main event. The PETS registration early deadline is still ahead too. The Tor meeting is by invitation and the CTF is mainly for the finalist competing teams. I strongly encourage everyone to visit the event websites, see all the people involved in the organization, notably in KTH and in Sweden, reach out to any of us, and see how they can get involved and attend."
Almost 500 people are attending these events. Is this an area that people are getting increasingly interested and intrigued by?
"Certainly. EuroS&P is the IEEE flagship event on security and privacy based in Europe. PETS is the top event on privacy enhancing technologies, with a vibrant community. The Tor project meeting brings to Stockholm a unique community that has strongly influenced private, free access to information. The Midnight Sun CTF grew and attracted much more interest internationally. CySeP brings again contributors from a European network and leading security and privacy figures, but also increased industry participation."
"The interest is driven by the developments. Broadly speaking, Sweden and Europe have been investing more in security and privacy research and development. The reason: everyone understands better risks and the need for security and privacy. Simply put, we, as societies, can make the best use of all the benefits new technologies bring; but we need to make sure they are trustworthy."
Some parts of the events that are open for the public to attend. What can they expect to see and learn?
"We will be opening to the public the closing session of CySeP – with a very interesting panel on Friday afternoon. This will give a rich and diverse set of perspectives, connecting technology and research with societal concerns."
"There will also be an informal open get-together with the CTF competing teams right after that, and an additional happening on the side of the CTF on Saturday morning. An excellent opportunity to debate all that was learned during the week. More so, an opportunity to meet all the CTF competing finalist teams."
"Beyond open to public sessions: CySeP comes with a very low registration fee, making it easy for everyone to attend, and it also gives the opportunity to KTH MSc students to attend for free. For all events, we did our best to keep fees reasonable. Moreover, we are building a team of volunteers who can help and get free participation. Last but not least, we are grateful to our partners and supporters that contribute and make low-cost and free access possible."
For further questions on the events, contact Professor Panagiotis Papadimitratos.