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Monash University

FIT2078 Introduction to security - Semester 2, 2014

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.

Mode of Delivery

  • Caulfield (Day)
  • Clayton (Day)

Workload Requirements

Minimum total expected workload equals 12 hours per week comprising:

(a.) Contact hours for on-campus students:

  • Two hours of lectures
  • One 2-hour tutorial

(b.) Additional requirements (all students):

  • A minimum of 8 hours independent study per week for completing private study, revision and assessment requirements.

Unit Relationships




FIT1001 or FIT1031

Chief Examiner

Campus Lecturer


Abdul Malik Khan


Nandita Bhattacharjee

Your feedback to Us

Monash is committed to excellence in education and regularly seeks feedback from students, employers and staff. One of the key formal ways students have to provide feedback is through the Student Evaluation of Teaching and Units (SETU) survey. The University’s student evaluation policy requires that every unit is evaluated each year. Students are strongly encouraged to complete the surveys. The feedback is anonymous and provides the Faculty with evidence of aspects that students are satisfied and areas for improvement.

For more information on Monash’s educational strategy, see:

www.monash.edu.au/about/monash-directions/ and on student evaluations, see: www.policy.monash.edu/policy-bank/academic/education/quality/student-evaluation-policy.html

Previous Student Evaluations of this Unit

Lectures in this unit are delivered simultaneously to Caulfield and Clayton Campuses via video conference. It was the first time this unit was run and also the first unit to be video-conferenced. Based on the student evaluations students were satisfied with the unit overall. But by improving student engagement across the both campuses student satisfaction can be further improved.

If you wish to view how previous students rated this unit, please go to

Academic Overview

Learning Outcomes

At the completion of this unit, students should be able to:
  • critically assess threats, vulnerabilities and risks to an organisations information assets and propose control technologies and techniques which can be applied to reduce the security risk;
  • apply cryptographic techniques to develop methods to disguise information to ensure its integrity, confidentiality and authenticity;
  • describe the ethical, legal and criminal issues relating to the security of information systems;
  • apply information security concepts in the analysis of information systems security issues;
  • apply risk management techniques to the planning and management of security of information systems;
  • implement access control mechanisms to create a security architecture to protect the assets of the information system.

Unit Schedule

Week Activities Assessment
0   No formal assessment or activities are undertaken in week 0
1 Introduction  
2 IT risk management  
3 Authentication Discussion class. Quiz 1 during tutorial session
4 Access control  
5 Introduction to number theory Discussion class. Quiz 2 during tutorial session
6 Cryptography I  
7 Cryptography II Discussion class. Quiz 3 during tutorial session
8 Public key cryptography  
9 Digital signature Discussion class. Quiz 4 during tutorial session
10 Database security Mid-semester Test during the lecture
11 Integrity management  
12 Ethics & Privacy Discussion class. Quiz 5 during tutorial session
  SWOT VAC No formal assessment is undertaken in SWOT VAC
  Examination period LINK to Assessment Policy: http://policy.monash.edu.au/policy-bank/

*Unit Schedule details will be maintained and communicated to you via your learning system.

Teaching Approach

Lecture and tutorials or problem classes
This teaching and learning approach provides facilitated learning, practical exploration and peer learning.

The lectures will cover the theoretical concepts of security. The tutorial/discussion classes will be used to explore the principles, available tools and operating system platforms. The exploration aims to demonstrate and illustrate the concepts provided in the lectures.

Assessment Summary

Examination (3 hours): 60%; In-semester assessment: 40%

Assessment Task Value Due Date
Tutorial Quizzes 1-5 20% (4% for each quiz) Weeks 3, 5, 7, 9 and 12 during tutorial session
Mid-semester Test 20% Week 10 during the lecture
Examination 1 60% To be advised

Assessment Requirements

Assessment Policy

Assessment Tasks


  • Assessment task 1
    Tutorial Quizzes 1-5
    Principles and application based on previous weeks topics.
    20% (4% for each quiz)
    Criteria for assessment:

    Understanding of the appropriate security principles and its applications to specific situations.

    Due date:
    Weeks 3, 5, 7, 9 and 12 during tutorial session
  • Assessment task 2
    Mid-semester Test
    Multiple choice questions and principles and applications based on the material covered up to Week 8.
    Criteria for assessment:

    Demonstrate an understanding of the topics covered up to Week 8.

    Due date:
    Week 10 during the lecture


  • Examination 1
    3 hours
    Type (open/closed book):
    Closed book
    Electronic devices allowed in the exam:

Learning resources

Reading list

  1. Goodrich M and Tamassia R, Introduction to Computer Security, Addison-Wesley, 2011
  2. Jill Slay and Andy Koronios, Information Technology Security & Risk Management, 3rd Edition, Wiley.
  3. Gollmann, D. (2010), Computer Security, Wiley, UK

Monash Library Unit Reading List (if applicable to the unit)

Faculty of Information Technology Style Guide

Feedback to you

Examination/other end-of-semester assessment feedback may take the form of feedback classes, provision of sample answers or other group feedback after official results have been published. Please check with your lecturer on the feedback provided and take advantage of this prior to requesting individual consultations with staff. If your unit has an examination, you may request to view your examination script booklet, see http://intranet.monash.edu.au/infotech/resources/students/procedures/request-to-view-exam-scripts.html

Types of feedback you can expect to receive in this unit are:

  • Informal feedback on progress in labs/tutes
  • Test results and feedback
  • Quiz results
  • Solutions to tutes, labs and assignments
  • Other: Individual student meetings

Extensions and penalties

Returning assignments

Assignment submission

It is a University requirement (http://www.policy.monash.edu/policy-bank/academic/education/conduct/student-academic-integrity-managing-plagiarism-collusion-procedures.html) for students to submit an assignment coversheet for each assessment item. Faculty Assignment coversheets can be found at http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/resources/student/forms/. Please check with your Lecturer on the submission method for your assignment coversheet (e.g. attach a file to the online assignment submission, hand-in a hard copy, or use an online quiz). Please note that it is your responsibility to retain copies of your assessments.

Online submission

If Electronic Submission has been approved for your unit, please submit your work via the learning system for this unit, which you can access via links in the my.monash portal.

Prescribed text(s)

Limited copies of prescribed texts are available for you to borrow in the library.

William Stallings & Lawrie Brown. (2012). Computer Security: Principles and Practice. (2nd Edition) Prentice Hall.

Other Information


Monash has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and to provide advice on how they might uphold them. You can find Monash’s Education Policies at: www.policy.monash.edu.au/policy-bank/academic/education/index.html

Key educational policies include:

Faculty resources and policies

Important student resources including Faculty policies are located at http://intranet.monash.edu.au/infotech/resources/students/

Graduate Attributes Policy

Student Charter

Student services

Monash University Library

Disability Liaison Unit

Students who have a disability or medical condition are welcome to contact the Disability Liaison Unit to discuss academic support services. Disability Liaison Officers (DLOs) visit all Victorian campuses on a regular basis.

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