Boston, MA
Sheraton Boston Hotel
Sep. 11-13, 2017

Engin Kirda

Professor, College of Computer and Information Science
Northeastern University

Engin Kirda holds the posts of professor of computer science at Northeastern University in Boston. Before that, he held faculty positions at Institute Eurecom in the French Riviera and the Technical University of Vienna, where he co-founded the Secure Systems Lab that is now distributed over five institutions in Europe and the United States. Professor Kirda’s research has focused on malware analysis (e.g., Anubis, Exposure, and Fire) and detection, web application security, and practical aspects of social networking security. He co-authored more than 100 peer-reviewed scholarly publications and served on the program committees of numerous well-known international conferences and workshops. Professor Kirda was the program chair of the International Symposium on Recent Advances in Intrusion Detection (RAID) in 2009, the program chair of the European Workshop on Systems Security (Eurosec) in 2010 and 2011, the program chair of the well-known USENIX Workshop on Large Scale Exploits and Emergent Threats in 2012, and the program chair of the security flagship conference Network and Distributed System Security Symposium (NDSS) in 2015. In the past, Professor Kirda has consulted the European Commission on emerging threats, and recently gave a Congressional Briefing in Washington D.C. on advanced malware attacks and cyber-security. He also spoke at SXSW Interactive 2015 about “Malware in the Wild” and at Blackhat 2015. Besides his roles at Northeastern, Professor Kirda is a co-founder of Lastline, Inc., a Silicon-Valley based company that specializes in the detection and prevention of advanced targeted malware.

September 12, 2017
3:40pm - 4:10pm
Grand Ballroom

Ransomware has been widely touted as a highly dangerous, sophisticated and destructive breed of malware. And some of it is. But based on recent academic research, much of ransomware in the wild today is not as sophisticated or scary as most believe.

While even simple programs can extort innocent people who aren’t able to separate real from fake cyber threats or protected by advanced security technology, what’s important to note is that the many ransomware today doesn’t fall into the hardest-to-catch camp that some more advanced threats do. In essence, most ransomware today is a blunt instrument for making a quick profit rather than an advance surgical tool.

This session will take a closer look at the behaviors of some of the ransomware studied in recent academic papers.

Additionally, speaker Engin Kirda will suggest some of the implications for security professionals as they look to protect their organizations and individuals from future ransomware attacks.

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