Learn from cybersecurity and policy experts at the Cyber Initiative seminar series

The Cyber Initiative's monthly seminar series brings cybersecurity and cyber policy experts from industry, government, academia, and civil society to Stanford for thought-provoking panels and discussions on computer security issues in the news and on our minds.

Consider joining our affiliated student group, Applied Cybersecurity!

The Applied Cybersecurity club is a Stanford group focused on teaching students practical skills in analyzing, exploiting, and defending computer systems. The club hosts a number of events and workshops open to the general Stanford community, and range from introductory to more technical.

Cyber Policy courses in International Policy Studies

Students in the Master's in International Policy Studies program select a course of specialization in their second year, one of which is Cyber Policy. The Cyber Initiative supports these courses, and we and our researchers teach the majority of them.

Suggested Courses of Interest

Stanford University

CME 238: Artificial Intelligence in Financial Technology (MS&E 446)

Survey the current Financial Technology landscape through the lens of Artificial Intelligence applications, with emphasis in 4 areas: Payments, Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies, Robo-Advisory, and Marketplace Lending. Students work in groups of 4 to develop an original financial technology project, research paper or product prototype within a chosen area. Final project posters to be presented to the class and posted online. Top posters to be selected and presented at the Stanford Financial Technology conference in January. Classes will alternate between industry speakers, lectures and scheduled group meetings with teaching team. Advanced undergraduates, graduate students, and students from other Schools are welcome to enroll. Prerequisites: Basic programming skills, knowledge of design process, introductory statistics. No formal finance experience required. Enrollment is capped at 32. Terms: Aut | Units: 3 | Repeatable for credit | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP) Instructors: Giesecke, K. (PI) ; Jain, K. (PI) ; Sadhwani, A. (TA)

CSRE 51K: Election 2016 (HISTORY 51K, POLISCI 51K)

The 2016 Presidential Election season has been anything but ordinary. So much in the Democratic and Republican primaries consistently defied conventional wisdom and upended the predictions of experts. This course will attempt, with the help of distinguished guests, to make sense of an election that defies all historical precedent and to take stock of the health of American democracy.nClass is jointly offered for Continuing Studies students and Stanford students. As a 1 unit, online course for Stanford students, enrollment is unlimited. Registration for the course offers online access to a livestream of each class session, participation in online discussions, access to course website and materials, and admission to a lottery for attending each class in person. Terms: Aut | Units: 1 | Grading: Satisfactory/No Credit Instructors: Kennedy, D. (PI) ; Reich, R. (PI) ; Steyer, J. (PI)

MGTECON 513: Platform Competition in Digital Markets

This class will analyze the economics of digital platform markets. The class format will consist of lectures and guest speakers. Concepts will be presented in the context of leading examples of internet and technology platforms such as online advertising, computing technology platforms (e.g. mobile), marketplaces, social networks, cloud computing, and financial technology platforms. The course will begin with economic definitions of platform markets, and it will review the most important insights from recent research in economic theory and strategy. It will then consider the role of scale economies and network effects in determining the dynamics of platform competition and long-run industry structure. Next, the class will consider key strategic decisions for firms, including entry strategies, vertical integration and exclusive deals. Units: 2 | Grading: GSB Student Option LTR/PF Instructors: Athey, S. (PI)

COMM 124: Lies, Trust, and Tech (COMM 224)

Deception is one of the most significant and pervasive social phenomena of our age. Lies range from the trivial to the very serious, including deception between friends and family, in the workplace, and in security and intelligence contexts. At the same time, information and communication technologies have pervaded almost all aspects of human communication, from everyday technologies that support interpersonal interactions to, such as email and instant messaging, to more sophisticated systems that support organization-level interactions. Given the prevalence of both deception and communication technology in our personal and professional lives, an important set of questions have recently emerged about how humans adapt their deceptive practices to new communication and information technologies, including how communication technology affects the practice of lying and the detection of deception, and whether technology can be used to identify deception. Terms: Aut | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP) Instructors: Hancock, J. (PI) ; Abeles, A. (TA) ; Chang, S. (TA) ; Suh, A. (TA)

MS&E 193: Technology and National Security (MS&E 293)

The interaction of technology and national security policy from the perspective of history to implications for the new security imperative, homeland defense. Key technologies in nuclear and biological weapons, military platforms, and intelligence gathering. Policy issues from the point of view of U.S. and other nations. The impact of terrorist threat. Guest lecturers include key participants in the development of technology and/or policy. Terms: Aut | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit. Instructors: Ellis, J. (PI) ; Felter, J. (PI) ; Hecker, S. (PI) ; Perry, W. (PI) ; DuBois, P. (TA) ; Gupta, V. (TA) ; Kim, R. (TA) ; Matthews, I. (TA) ; Olney, R. (TA) ; Sorenson, Z. (TA)

IPS 232: Hacking for Diplomacy

Tackling Foreign Policy Challenges with the Lean Launchpad (MS&E 298) At a time of significant global uncertainty, diplomats are grappling with transnational and cross-cutting challenges that defy easy solution including: the continued pursuit of weapons of mass destruction by states and non-state groups, the outbreak of internal conflict across the Middle East and in parts of Africa, the most significant flow of refugees since World War II, and a changing climate that is beginning to have impacts on both developed and developing countries. While the traditional tools of statecraft remain relevant, policymakers are looking to harness the power of new technologies to rethink how the U.S. government approaches and responds to these and other long-standing challenges. In this class, student teams will take actual foreign policy challenges and learn how to apply lean startup principles, ("mission model canvas," "customer development," and "agile engineering¿) to discover and validate agency and user needs and to continually build iterative prototypes to test whether they understood the problem and solution. Teams take a hands-on approach requiring close engagement with officials in the U.S. State Department and other civilian agencies. Team applications required at the end of shopping period. Limited enrollment. Terms: Aut | Units: 3-4 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP) Instructors: Blank, S. (PI) ; Felter, J. (PI) ; Weinstein, J. (PI)

CS 255: Introduction to Cryptography

For advanced undergraduates and graduate students. Theory and practice of cryptographic techniques used in computer security. Topics: encryption (symmetric and public key), digital signatures, data integrity, authentication, key management, PKI, zero-knowledge protocols, and real-world applications. Prerequisite: basic probability theory.

IPS 245: Does Google Need a Foreign Policy? Private Corporations & International Security in the Digital Age (PUBLPOL 245)

Facebook has more users than any nation has citizens. Apple CEO Tim Cook speaks more often with Chinese President Xi Jinping than President Trump does. Google's revenues exceed the GDPs of more than half the world's countries. Cybersecurity companies produce weapons that once only foreign governments wielded. These and other technology companies are increasingly caught in the maw of global politics whether it's entering challenging new foreign markets, developing platforms that enable millions of people around the world to organize for both noble and nefarious aims, or developing products that can become tools of intelligence agencies worldwide for surveillance, counterintelligence, and information warfare. In several respects, tech companies wield more power than governments. We examine the changing role of corporations in international politics, the role of the state, and critical challenges that large technology companies face today in particular. We discuss contending perspectives more »

ECON 152: The Future of Finance (ECON 252, PUBLPOL 364, STATS 238)

If you are interested in a career in finance or that touches finance (computational science, economics, public policy, legal, regulatory, corporate, other), this course will give you a useful perspective. We will take on hot topics in the current landscape of global financial markets such as how the world has evolved post-financial crisis, how it is being disrupted by FinTech, RegTech, artificial intelligence, crowd financing, blockchain, machine learning & robotics (to name a few), how it is being challenged by IoT, cyber, financial warfare & crypto currency risks (to name a few) and how it is seizing new opportunities in fast-growing areas such as ETFs, new instruments/payment platforms, robo advising, big data & algorithmic trading (to name a few). The course will include guest-lecturer perspectives on how sweeping changes are transforming business models and where the greatest opportunities exist for students entering or touching the world of finance today inclu more »

CS 22A: The Social & Economic Impact of Artificial Intelligence (IPS 200)

Recent advances in computing may place us at the threshold of a unique turning point in human history. Soon we are likely to entrust management of our environment, economy, security, infrastructure, food production, healthcare, and to a large degree even our personal activities, to artificially intelligent computer systems. The prospect of "turning over the keys" to increasingly autonomous systems raises many complex and troubling questions. How will society respond as versatile robots and machine-learning systems displace an ever-expanding spectrum of blue- and white-collar workers? Will the benefits of this technological revolution be broadly distributed or accrue to a lucky few? How can we ensure that these systems respect our ethical principles when they make decisions at speeds and for rationales that exceed our ability to comprehend? What, if any, legal rights and responsibilities should we grant them? And should we regard them merely as sophisticated tools or as a newly emerging form of life? The goal of CS22 is to equip students with the intellectual tools, ethical foundation, and psychological framework to successfully navigate the coming age of intelligent machines.

LAW 4015: Modern Surveillance Law

This seminar provides an in depth look at modern government surveillance law, policies and practices. It is taught by Richard Salgado, director of law enforcement and information security at Google and a former prosecutor at the U.S. Department of Justice's Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section, and Todd Hinnen, a partner at Perkins Coie and a former head of U.S. Department of Justice's National Security Division. The course will cover the technology, law and policy of government surveillance of the Internet and other communications technologies. We will focus on U.S. government surveillance for national security, criminal law enforcement and public safety purposes, but also address the relationship with other jurisdictions. Technologies and practices covered will include wiretapping, stored data collection and mining, location tracking and developing eavesdropping techniques. Legal regimes will include the Fourth Amendment, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the USA Freedom Act, USA Patriot Act, the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, and CALEA among others. Elements used in grading: Two papers, timely submission of topics and outlines, and class participation.

MS&E 130: Information Networks and Services

Architecture of the Internet and performance engineering of computer systems and networks. Switching, routing and shortest path algorithms. Congestion management and queueing networks. Peer-to-peer networking. Wireless and mobile networking. Information service engineering and management. Search engines and recommendation systems. Reputation systems and social networking technologies. Security and trust. Information markets. Select special topics and case studies. Prerequisites: 111, 120, and CS 106A.

SCPD Webinar on Cyber Security

Dan Boneh is teaching a fall 2018 course on Bitcoin; for a preview, see his SCPD webinar on the future of Bitcoin and cyber security.

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The Future of Bitcoin and Cyber Security

Stanford Center for Professional Development

Blockchain scholarship published in the Stanford Journal of Blockchain Law and Policy

The Stanford Journal of Blockchain Law and Policy is the first law journal to publish on the greater blockchain technology space. It features Articles (peer-reviewed), Essays, and Comments. Edited by Stanford University and Stanford-affiliated academics and practitioners based out of the CodeX Stanford Blockchain Group, JBLP fills a critical need in the field for a neutral, disinterested, and reputable platform to publish high-quality content and to advance discourse.