Distributed systems are made up of multiple independent nodes, working together through some messaging service. Security in such systems poses unique challenges, as they feature an augmented attack surface, heterogeneous platforms, and multilateral security interests. This has made securing distributed IT systems a non-trivial challenge, which has become an active research area in recent years.

In this seminar we connect contemporary challenges of securing distributed systems to the possibilities of modern, language-based approaches to IT security. Language-based approaches to security exploit properties of formal languages (i.e., of programming and specification languages) that are used in system construction. The use of semantic-based program analyses enables one to reliably check security requirements. The use of run-time mechanisms and of program transformations enables one to establish additional security guarantees. That is, language-based security can be employed both, for security certification and for hardening systems.

After successful participation in the course, you will be able to widen and deepen your understanding by studying relevant literature. You learn ways to assess research results, to compare results, and to put them into context with related work. You get familiar with the content of at least one publication in detail, and you are able to present the key aspects to a heterogeneous audience using slides. You learn to engage in a scientific discussion based on your presentation, and you are able to argue for your viewpoints. In addition, you learn to use a discussion for resolving your unclarities after talks of other students.