Book Reviews: Information Security Books and Product Reviews – Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure

Book Title: Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure, First Edition

Author(s): Sajal K Das, Krishna Kant, Nan Zhang

Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann (Imprint of Elsevier)

Date of Publishing: 26 February 2012

ISBN(13): 9780124158153

Price (UK&US price – full price, not discounted price): £60.99,   $99.95

URL of Amazon UK web page:  Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure

URL of Amazon UK (Kindle) web page: Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure

URL of Amazon US web page: Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure

URL of Amazon US (Kindle) web page:  Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure

My first impression of this book could be summed up by just one word: daunting. Don’t be fooled by the use of the word ‘handbook’ in the title; this is not a book that you’ll be packing in your bag as a quick reference. The Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure has a hardcover and runs to nearly 850 pages, over 26 pages of which are needed for the index alone.

The Handbook was developed as a result of a workshop on infrastructure security organised by Dr Sajal K Das and Krishna Kant, who, in conjunction with Nan Zhang, form the editorial group for this book. Each of the editors is a professor at a university in the US, and this sets the tone for the Handbook, both in terms of the context, as it has a North American bias, but also the manner in which the topics are covered. The Handbook has been produced by compiling thirty papers, from a range of contributors, including the editors. Given this ‘constructional’ approach, and the size of the Handbook, it would have been useful to include a glossary to align terminology, but unfortunately none is provided.

Cyber-Physical Critical infrastructures are defined as infrastructures upon which modern society depends to function. This includes buildings, utility networks (water, sewage, power, fuel and so on), transportation networks (roads, railways, airports), transportation vehicles, distribution networks, healthcare delivery systems, IT networks, and so on. Management of these infrastructures requires complex control systems employing sophisticated computing and communication components. In turn, these supporting components require extensive physical infrastructures themselves, introducing the need for configuration, management and protection. It is the use of IT systems that creates the “cyber” reference in the Handbook’s title, while “cyber-physical” indicates the interaction between the physical and computing aspects of these systems.

The purpose of this book is to discuss security issues and vulnerabilities that arise from the complex interaction of cyber and physical aspects of such infrastructures. It addresses this by providing wide-ranging coverage of the theoretical foundations and practical solutions or approaches to producing solutions to prevent disruption of cyber-physical infrastructures, primarily the IT components. This involves consideration of many facets such as physical boundaries, human and legislative aspects, privacy concerns as well as technological solutions. This book focuses on scientific and engineering techniques, frameworks and applications and brings together “high quality contributions on the critical challenges, innovative solutions, and foundational techniques” to address these topics.

Published in February 2012, relatively recent topics such as the Stuxnet outbreak are included, as are discussions of current commercial offerings such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services and Google App Engine. Whilst the Handbook includes topical information, its long term value will be assured by the breadth of material it includes, the detail and rigor with which the areas are addressed, and the techniques that it provides to the security professional.The book is structured as eight parts each covering a different topic, each part containing several chapters addressing a different aspect of that topic. Each chapter includes discussion about current challenges and future research and technology. Specifically these sections are:

Introduction: Securing Cyber-Physical Infrastructures-An Overview

* Part 1: Theoretical Foundations – the topics in this section are presented to provide a solid theoretical approach to securing cyber-physical networks and systems. Information has been sourced from the fields of control theory, graph theory, game theory, and epidemic theory, and seeks to link the worlds of cyber and physical.o 1: Security and Vulnerability of Cyber-Physical Infrastructure Networks:  A Control-Theoretic Approacho 2: Game Theory for Infrastructure Security – The Power of Intent-Based Adversary Modelso 3: An Analytical Framework for Cyber-Physical Networks

o 4: Evolution of Widely Spreading Worms and Countermeasures : Epidemic Theory and Application

* Part 2: Security for Wireless Mobile Networks provides four chapters covering problems with securing wireless networks.o 5: Mobile Wireless Network Securityo 6: Robust Wireless Infrastructure against Jamming Attackso 7: Security for Mobile Ad Hoc Networks

o 8: Defending against Identity-Based Attacks in Wireless Networks

* Part 3: Security for Sensor Networks considers the issues involved in securing wireless sensor networks and considers the challenges of access control and protection against physical and node compromise attacks.o 9: Efficient and Distributed Access Control for Sensor Networkso 10: Defending against Physical Attacks in Wireless Sensor Networks

o 11: Node Compromise Detection in Wireless Sensor Networks

* Part 4: Platform Security – the approach in this section is predicated on the idea that there are three assumptions made by all mechanisms used to secure protocols, applications and data (on a platform). The chapters presented have been chosen to show how these assumptions can be enforced. Malware detection is not covered.o 12: Hardware and Security: Vulnerabilities and Solutions

o 13: Languages and Security: Safer Software Through Language and Compiler Techniques

* Part 5: Cloud Computing and Data Security – the chapters in this section discuss topics around the secure transmission, processing and publishing of data, and issues around the outsourcing of these topics. This section focuses on data integrity  and confidentialityo 14: Protecting Data in Outsourcing Scenarioso 15: Data Security in Cloud Computingo 16: Secure Mobile Cloud Computing

o 17: Relation Privacy Preservation in  Online Social Networks

* Part 6: Event Monitoring and Situation Awareness – this section concentrates on the monitoring of cyber-physical infrastructure, and raises issues that limit the development of a centralised situational awareness due to factors including resource constraints.o 18: Distributed Network and System Monitoring for Securing Cyber-Physical Infrastructureo 19: Discovering and Tracking Patterns of Interest in Security Sensor Streamso 20: Pervasive Sensing and Monitoring for Situational Awareness

o 21: Sense and Response Systems for Crisis Management

* Part 7. Policy Issues in Security Management – presents three papers concerned with policy issues and policy management.o 22: Managing and Securing Critical Infrastructure – A Semantic Policy and Trust-Driven Approacho 23: Policies, Access Control, and Formal Methods

o 24: Formal Analysis of Policy based Security Configurations in Enterprise Networks

* Part 8: Security in Real-World Systems – presents a set of case studies of real-world systems and discusses the unique security aspects of each of these systems.o 25: Security and Privacy in the Smart Grido 26: Cyber-physical Security of Automotive Information Technologyo 27: Security and Privacy for Mobile Healthcare (m-Health) Systemso 28: Security and Robustness in the Internet Infrastructureo 29: Emergency Vehicular Networkso 30: Security Issues in VoIP Telecommunication Networks

The authors outline a number of scenarios in which the Handbook can be used: a variety of audiences from theoretical/academic groups (teachers and students) to more applied disciplines (engineer and professional). To reinforce the learning aspect and approach to a particular topic, each section concludes with a set of exercises to help the reader consolidate what they have read.

The Handbook on Securing Cyber-Physical Critical Infrastructure is broad in scope and dives deeply into each of the topics covered. Produced by, and aimed at, an academic audience, its accessibility will be limited for some readers, but for others it will provide a valuable toolkit of techniques, case studies, and references for further study.

Marks: 5 out of 5
*****

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