Public Tech Talk: “Security-Aware Cyber-Physical Systems with Varying Levels of Autonomy”

  • Date Wednesday, September 02, 2020  Time 1:00 PM
  • Speaker Dr. Miroslav Pajic, Duke University
  • Location This talk was live-streamed and a recording is available by clicking the YouTube image below.


Increasing set of functionalities, network interoperability, and system design complexity have introduced easily exploitable security vulnerabilities in cyber-physical systems (CPS). Furthermore, the tight interaction between information technology and physical world, as well as the rising levels of autonomy, make these systems vulnerable to attacks beyond the standard cyber-attacks; relying exclusively on conventional security techniques may be unfeasible due to resource-constraints and long system lifetime. Consequently, there is a need to change the way we reason about security in CPS, and start designing platform-aware attack-resilient components and architectures capable providing strong safety and performance guarantees even under attack. In this talk, I will present research challenges and our recent efforts in this domain, starting from cyber-physical security techniques that (a) capture effects of attacks on system performance, (b) introduce attack-resilience into components at each level of the autonomy stack, and (c) enable mapping of the desired Quality-of-Control (QoC) under attack guarantees into real-time platform requirements in way that supports design-time tradeoffs between the QoC under attack and security-related overhead. For systems with varying levels of autonomy and human interaction, I will also show how we can exploit human power of inductive reasoning and the ability to provide context, to improve the overall security guarantees. Finally, I will present how we can capture security-related CPS specification as hyperproperties, and introduce statistical model checking methods to check such specifications.


Miroslav Pajic is the Dickinson Family Associate Professor in Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke University. He also holds a secondary appointment in the Computer Science Department. His research interests focus on the design and analysis of high-assurance cyber-physical systems with varying levels of autonomy and human interaction.

Dr. Pajic received various awards including the NSF CAREER Award, ONR Young Investigator Program  Award, ACM SIGBED Early-Career Researcher Award, IEEE TCCPS Early-Career Award, IBM Faculty Award, ACM SIGBED Frank Anger Memorial Award, the Joseph and Rosaline Wolf Dissertation Award from Penn Engineering, as well as seven Best Paper and Runner-up Awards, such as the Best Paper Awards at the 2017 ACM SIGBED International Conference on Embedded Software (EMSOFT) and 2014 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Cyber-Physical Systems (ICCPS), and the Best Student Paper award at the 2012 IEEE Real-Time and Embedded Technology and Applications Symposium (RTAS). He is an associate editor in the ACM Transactions on Computing for Healthcare (ACM HEALTH) and a co-Chair of the 2019 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Cyber-Physical Systems (ICCPS’19).

This talk was live-streamed and a recording is available by clicking the YouTube image at the top of this page.