CS4501-001: Privacy in the Internet Age, Fall 2020

Important note: given the small class size, I do plan to teach the course in person. However, as required for all courses, this course will provide an online component to students who are unable to attend in person, e.g., via streaming/recording of lectures, online office hours, etc. We will ensure that students have the same access to course resources, whether in person or online.

Course Description

This course provides an in-depth look into privacy issues on the Internet and introduces privacy enhancing technologies. We will cover topics such as anonymous communications, traffic analysis and location privacy. We will also examine the trade-offs between security and privacy, and the interactions with other fields such as machine learning and policy.


CS2150. Some background in cybersecurity (CS3710) and computer networks (CS4457) will be helpful but not required.

Course Schedule

Tentative schedule, subject to change.

Dates Topic Notes
Wed 8/26 Intro Online
Mon 8/31 Background
Wed 9/2 Privacy issues with IP
Mon 9/7 Anonymity systems
Wed 9/9 Website fingerprinting In person class starts (if permitted)
Mon 9/14 Censorship techniques
Wed 9/16 Censorship measurement
Mon 9/21 Censorship circumvention HW 1 due
Wed 9/23 Guest lecture (Danny Huang)
Mon 9/28 IoT Privacy Quiz 1
Wed 9/30 Online tracking
Mon 10/5 Data privacy 1
Wed 10/7 Data privacy 2
Mon 10/12 Machine learning and privacy
Wed 10/14 Routing attacks on privacy HW 2 due on Friday 10/16
Mon 10/19 Guest lecture (David Wang) Quiz 2
Wed 10/21 DNS privacy
Mon 10/26 Privacy and anomaly detection
Wed 10/28 CDN privacy
Mon 11/2 Privacy in new Internet architecture HW 3 due
Wed 11/4 ISP privacy Quiz 3
Fri 11/6 Project team and topic due
Mon 11/9 Privacy policy
Wed 11/11 Privacy and user study
Mon 11/16 Summary and future outlook
Wed 11/18 Project presentation
Mon 11/23 Project presentation
Wed 12/9 Final project deliverable due



We will use Collab for the course announcements and assignment submissions