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IK2206 Internet Security and Privacy 7.5 credits

This course is about communicating securely over the Internet. By secure we mean: knowing who we are talking to, that no one has tampered with our messages and that no one can eavesdropped on our conversation. To do this we need the help of cryptography. Using the tools of cryptography we can construct protocols that fulfill our requirements.

Choose semester and course offering to see current information and more about the course, such as course syllabus, study period, and application information.

Headings with content from the Course syllabus IK2206 (Autumn 2024–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

The course is based on a set of lectures and a project work. The lectures cover the following areas:

  • basics of cryptography and information theory, substitution, mono- and poly-alphabetic, home-phonic and, transposition ciphers
  • properties and implementation of block ciphers, modes of operations, properties of message digests and how to provide integrity
  • public-key encryption, RSA, Diffie-Hellman and, digital signatures
  • authentication of users, passwords, biometrics, hand shake to provide a private and integrity protected communication channel
  • communication protocols used on the Internet: Kerberos, IPsec, SSL, PKI etc.

In the project work the students will learn more about a particular technology or application domain such as bank security, link layer security, biometrics, quantum cryptography etc. Each student will write a short overview of the subject and prepare a tutorial presentation.

Intended learning outcomes

The aim of the course is to give the students in depth knowledge of techniques used to create secure communication protocols. The students shall after the course be able to:

  • explain the principles behind encryption using shared keys
  • motivate the design principles for block ciphers
  • choose suitable modes of operations for block ciphers
  • explain the principles of message digests
  • use message integrity codes
  • explain the principles for public key encryption
  • choose appropriate techniques for authentication
  • explain the design of Internet standards such as: Kerberos, IPsec, SSL and PKI
  • evaluate a complex application and identify how security related issues are solved and how this will impact the security of the application.

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

IK1203 Networks and Communications or equivalent. 

Knowledge in data communication and Internet technologies.

Knowledge in English corresponding to the upper secondary course English B/English 6. 

Recommended prerequisites

knowledge in data communication and Internet technologies


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Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • PROA - Project, 1.5 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TENA - Examination, 4.5 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F
  • UPGA - Assignment, 1.5 credits, grading scale: P, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

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Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

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Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course room in Canvas

Registered students find further information about the implementation of the course in the course room in Canvas. A link to the course room can be found under the tab Studies in the Personal menu at the start of the course.

Offered by

Main field of study

Computer Science and Engineering, Electrical Engineering

Education cycle

Second cycle

Add-on studies

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Peter Sjödin (

Supplementary information

In this course, the EECS code of honor applies, see:

This course overlaps with IV1013 Introduction to computer security, only one of IK2206, IV1013 can be included in the degree.