Offensive Computer Security Spring 2014 Homepage


Prof. Xiuwen Liu (homepage:
W. Owen Redwood (homepage:

Course Time and Location

Mondays and Wednesdays (Not Fridays) at 3:35PM-4:50PM, HCB 0216.

This web site contains the up-to-date information related to this class such as news, announcements, assignments, lecture notes, and useful links to resources that are helpful to this class. Besides the web pages, Blackboard will be used to communicate changes and updates and post grades for this class; in particular, I will send emails using email addresses in the Blackboard system and please make sure that your email address on record is current.

Office Hours

Prof Liu - Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11AM - 12noon LOV 166(Love building).

Also available is Joshua Lawrence - Tuesday and Thursdays from 2PM-3PM in LOV 167.


The primary incentive for an attacker to exploit a vulnerability, or series of vulnerabilities is to achieve a return on an investment (his/her time usually). This return need not be strictly monetary—an attacker may be interested in obtaining access to data, identities, or some other commodity that is valuable to them. The field of penetration testing involves authorized auditing and exploitation of systems to assess actual system security in order to protect against attackers. This requires thorough knowledge of vulnerabilities and how to exploit them. Thus, this course provides an introductory but comprehensive coverage of the fundamental methodologies, skills, legal issues, and tools used in white hat penetration testing, secure system administration, and incident response.


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