CIS 610 – Discussion Topics


1.  Surveillance Systems (biometrics, CCTV)

Focus:  Can/how can biometric systems provide better security in the US?


What lessons can the US learn from Britain’s experience with CCTV?

Would CCTV surveillance systems provide security in particular US sites; e.g., Reagan National Airport?


Jeffrey Rosen, “A cautionary tale for a new age of surveillance,” 10/7/01, New York Times Magazine, (registration required)    

Bruce Schneier, “Biometrics in airports,” page 5+ of Crypto-Gram Newsletter, 9/30/01,     

Phil Agre, “Your face is not a bar-code:  Arguments against automatic face recognition in public places,” version of 10/9/01,        



2.  Vulnerability of US computer systems (including Internet, government, and critical infrastructure) to attack

Focus:  Weaknesses/vulnerabilities

What can be done to protect?


Michael Vatis, Director of Institute for Security Technology Studies, Dartmouth College, to House subcommittee, “Cyber terrorism:  the state of US preparedness,” 9/26/01,   

Cyber Protests:  The Threat to the US Information Infrastructure, Oct 2001, NIPC,          

National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC):

John Schwartz, “Securing the lines of a wired nation,” 10/4/01,    

Robert O’Harrow, “Key US computer systems called vulnerable to attack,” 9/27/01,        

Jon Swartz, “Experts:  Cyberspace could be next target,”, 10/17/01,        

Jennifer Jones, et al, “Feds make cyberassets protection a priority,” 10/12/01,  


Not directly related to critical infrastructure protection, bur rather focuses on the risks of disinformation:  Will Knight, “Hacker rewrites Yahoo! news stories,” 9/20/01,         


From the National Infrastructure Protection Center (NIPC), 7 tips for protecting small business and home computer users:        



3.  Civil Liberties:  privacy and security

Focus:  What are the civil liberties concerns in the proposed anti-terrorist legislation?


Center for Democracy and Technology (CDT), “Civil liberties concerns in the anti-terrorist bills as of 10/8/01:    

EPIC, “Analysis of provisions of the proposed anti-terrorism act of 2001,”, 9/24/01,        

latest news about anti-terrorism legislation at: 

              has 10/12/01 issue of Epic Alert, with information on Senate approval of anti-terrorism legislation


Bruce Schneier, “Protecting privacy and liberty,” page 14+ of Crypto-Gram Newsletter, 9/30/01,     

Declan McCullagh, “Why liberty suffers in wartime,” 9/24/01,,1294,47051,00.html  

Anne Harrison, “Senate passes terror bill,” 10/12/01,       

Kevin Poulsen, “Hackers face life imprisonment  under Anti-Terrorism Act,” 10/24/01,