FIT1019 Introduction to security - Semester 1 , 2007 unit guide

Semester 1, 2007

Chief Examiner

Dr. Maria Indrawan


Caulfield : Dr. Maria Indrawan


This unit will provide students with a knowledge of information systems security issues, and their relevance to the management of information systems in contemporary organisations. The students will gain knowledge of the nature of information threats, risks and vulnerabilities and of the control technologies and techniques which can be applied to reduce risk. Students will be expected to demonstrate ethically sound viewpoints with respect to the protection of information resources while maintaining a secure IS framework related to a defence in depth strategy. Further students will have an understanding of the ethical, legal and criminal issues relating to the security of information systems. Additionally students will be required to analyse and assess recent developments and future trends in IS security technologies.


Knowledge and Understanding

At the completion of this subject you should have knowledge and understanding and be able to analyse:

1. The importance of information systems security issues to contemporary organisations

2. Information security concepts and philosophies.

3. Threats, vulnerabilities and risks to an organisations' information assets and the control technologies and techniques required to support this.

4. Understanding of the mathematical foundation of cryptoanalysis.

5. The ethical, legal and criminal issues relating to the security of information systems

6. Evalute current and future developments and trends in security control technologies and techniques

7. the relevance of human factors to information security planning and management

8. Apply the security concept in securing information systems by exploring the security mechanism available in an operating systems environment such as UNIX.


No prerequisite knowledge is required. It is considered useful but not essential. However it is expected students will have an appreciation of information systems and information technology principles to draw upon.

Unit relationships

FIT1019 is a core unit in the secuirty major of the BITS.


Texts and software

Required text(s)

There is no required text, however some recommended reading list is provided. Please read the recommended reading section.

Textbook availability

Text books are available from the Monash University Book Shops. Availability from other suppliers cannot be assured. The Bookshop orders texts in specifically for this unit. You are advised to purchase your text book early.

Software requirements

No special software is required.

Hardware requirements


Recommended reading

Pfleeger, C.P and Pfleeger, S.L, Security in Computing, 3rd edition, Prentice Hall

Anderson, R. (2001). Security Engineering. London: John Wiley & Sons. Bosworth, S. & Kabay, M.E. (Eds.).(2002).

Gollmann, D. (2006), Computer Security, Wiley, UK

Library access

You may need to access the Monash library either personally to be able to satisfactorily complete the subject.  Be sure to obtain a copy of the Library Guide, and if necessary, the instructions for remote access from the library website.

Study resources

Study resources for FIT1019 are:

Study resources can be found in the unit website that can be accessed through MUSO.

Unit website

Structure and organisation

Week Topics Key Dates
1 Introduction
2 Threats and Risk Analysis
3 Access Control
4 Authentication
5 Math for Cryptography I Unit Test 1, tutorials
6 Good Friday, NO LECTURE
Non teaching week
7 Math for Cryptography II
8 Introduction to Cryptography Unit Test 2, tutorials
9 Modern Cryptography
10 Defense Systems
11 Software Security
12 Ethics and Privacy Assignment 1, Monday at midnight. Presentation at tutorials.
13 Revision


The timetable for on-campus classes for this unit can be viewed in Allocate+


Assessment weighting

Assessment for the unit consists of 2 unit test, 1 written assignment and a presentation with a weighting of 50% and an examination with a weighting of 50%. Read this section VERY carefully.

Component A:

Unit Test 1 : UNIX and Access Control 10% (week 5)

Unit Test 2: Maths for Security 10% (week 8)

Assignment 2 : Report on Cryptography 20%(week12)

Presentation: Based on assignment 1 10% (week12)


Component B:

2 hours Exam 50%


Assessment Policy

To pass this unit you must:


  • 50% overall and
  • at least 40% of the available marks in component A and B.

In the situation whereby you fail to meet the 40% rule, the final mark that will be published is the mark of the assessment that failed to meet the 40% rule.

For example, a final mark of 38 will be awarded to a student who receives an average of 70% from all assignments and 38% on the exam.


Your score for the unit will be calculated by:

Where none of component A OR B is less than 40%

Final = 0.1 x Unit Test 1 + 0.1 x Unit Test 2 + 0.2 x Assignment 1 + 0.1 x Presentation + 0.5 x Exam


Where one or both component A and B is less than 40%

Final = the value of the component that less than 40%.

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Due Date Weighting
Unit Test 1: UNIX and Access Control Week 5 tutorials 10%
Unit Test 2: Maths for security Week 8 tutorials 10 %
Assignment 1: Cryptography Week 12, Monday 21st May 2007, 12 NOON 20 %
Presentation Tutorials week 12.

Assignment specifications will be made available on the FIT1019 website.

Assignment Submission

Assignments will be submitted by electronic submission to Damocles plagiarism detection system at The cut off time for submission is the midnight on the due date.

Extensions and late submissions

Late submission of assignments

Assignments received after the due date will be subject to a penalty of 10% per-day (including weekend). Assignment will not be accepted after the cut off date that usually set one week after the due date.

This policy is strict because comments or guidance will be given on assignments as they are returned, and sample solutions may also be published and distributed, after assignment marking or with the returned assignment. 


It is your responsibility to structure your study program around assignment deadlines, family, work and other commitments. Factors such as normal work pressures, vacations, etc. are seldom regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. 

Requests for extensions must be made by emailing the lecturer at least two days before the due date. You will be asked to forward original medical certificates in cases of illness, and may be asked to provide other forms of documentation where necessary. A copy of the email or other written communication of an extension must be attached to the assignment submission.

Grading of assessment

Assignments, and the unit, will be marked and allocated a grade according to the following scale:

Grade Percentage/description
HD High Distinction - very high levels of achievement, demonstrated knowledge and understanding, skills in application and high standards of work encompassing all aspects of the tasks.
In the 80+% range of marks for the assignment.
D Distinction - high levels of achievement, but not of the same standards. May have a weakness in one particular aspect, or overall standards may not be quite as high.
In the 70-79% range.
C Credit - sound pass displaying good knowledge or application skills, but some weaknesses in the quality, range or demonstration of understanding.
In the 60-69% range.
P Pass acceptable standard, showing an adequate basic knowledge, understanding or skills, but with definite limitations on the extent of such understanding or application. Some parts may be incomplete.
In the 50-59% range.
N Not satisfactory failure to meet the basic requirements of the assessment.
Below 50%.

Assignment return

We will aim to have assignment results made available to you within two weeks after assignment receipt.


Feedback to you

You will receive feedback on your work and progress in this unit. This feedback may be provided through your participation in tutorials and class discussions, as well as through your assignment submissions. It may come in the form of individual advice, marks and comments, or it may be provided as comment or reflection targeted at the group. It may be provided through personal interactions, such as interviews and on-line forums, or through other mechanisms such as on-line self-tests and publication of grade distributions.

Feedback from you

You will be asked to provide feedback to the Faculty through a Unit Evaluation survey at the end of the semester. You may also be asked to complete surveys to help teaching staff improve the unit and unit delivery. Your input to such surveys is very important to the faculty and the teaching staff in maintaining relevant and high quality learning experiences for our students.

And if you are having problems

It is essential that you take action immediately if you realise that you have a problem with your study. The semester is short, so we can help you best if you let us know as soon as problems arise. Regardless of whether the problem is related directly to your progress in the unit, if it is likely to interfere with your progress you should discuss it with your lecturer or a Community Service counsellor as soon as possible.

Plagiarism and cheating

Plagiarism and cheating are regarded as very serious offences. In cases where cheating  has been confirmed, students have been severely penalised, from losing all marks for an assignment, to facing disciplinary action at the Faculty level. While we would wish that all our students adhere to sound ethical conduct and honesty, I will ask you to acquaint yourself with Student Rights and Responsibilities and the Faculty regulations that apply to students detected cheating as these will be applied in all detected cases.

In this University, cheating means seeking to obtain an unfair advantage in any examination or any other written or practical work to be submitted or completed by a student for assessment. It includes the use, or attempted use, of any means to gain an unfair advantage for any assessable work in the unit, where the means is contrary to the instructions for such work. 

When you submit an individual assessment item, such as a program, a report, an essay, assignment or other piece of work, under your name you are understood to be stating that this is your own work. If a submission is identical with, or similar to, someone else's work, an assumption of cheating may arise. If you are planning on working with another student, it is acceptable to undertake research together, and discuss problems, but it is not acceptable to jointly develop or share solutions unless this is specified by your lecturer. 

Intentionally providing students with your solutions to assignments is classified as "assisting to cheat" and students who do this may be subject to disciplinary action. You should take reasonable care that your solution is not accidentally or deliberately obtained by other students. For example, do not leave copies of your work in progress on the hard drives of shared computers, and do not show your work to other students. If you believe this may have happened, please be sure to contact your lecturer as soon as possible.

Cheating also includes taking into an examination any material contrary to the regulations, including any bilingual dictionary, whether or not with the intention of using it to obtain an advantage.

Plagiarism involves the false representation of another person's ideas, or findings, as your own by either copying material or paraphrasing without citing sources. It is both professional and ethical to reference clearly the ideas and information that you have used from another writer. If the source is not identified, then you have plagiarised work of the other author. Plagiarism is a form of dishonesty that is insulting to the reader and grossly unfair to your student colleagues.


Communication methods

Preferrably students will attend the helpdesk sessions for queries related to the unit materials.


Notices related to the unit during the semester will be placed on the Notices Newsgroup in the Unit Website. Check this regularly. Failure to read the Notices newsgroup is not regarded as grounds for special consideration.

Consultation Times

Please refer to the helpdesk sessions

If direct communication with your unit adviser/lecturer or tutor outside of consultation periods is needed you may contact the lecturer and/or tutors at:

Dr Maria Indrawan
Fax +61 3 990 31077

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All email communication to you from your lecturer will occur through your Monash student email address. Please ensure that you read it regularly, or forward your email to your main address. Also check that your contact information registered with the University is up to date in My.Monash.

Additional information

Helpdesk Sessions

Monday 3-5 PM, Maria Indrawan

Last updated: Feb 20, 2007