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Trustworthy Operating Systems
November 14 @ 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Abstract: Today’s operating systems are large, complex, and plagued with vulnerabilities that allow perpetrators to exploit them for profit. The constant rise in the number of software weaknesses, coupled with the sophistication of modern adversaries, make the need for effective and agile defenses more critical than ever. In this talk, I will present my work on developing novel protection mechanisms and exploit prevention techniques that improve the security posture of commodity operating systems. In particular, I will discuss kGuard, XPFO, and kR^X, three projects whose goal is to harden contemporary OSes against attacks that exploit vulnerabilities in kernel code, without entailing super-privileged software (e.g., a hypervisor or VMM). In addition, I will talk about ret2dir, a new kernel exploitation technique that I developed, which uncovered how fundamental OS design practices and implementation decisions can significantly weaken the effectiveness of state of-the-art kernel protection mechanisms.
Speaker(s): Vasileios (Vasilis) Kemerlis,
Bldg: Engineering Building
1 Old Ferry Road
Bristol, Rhode Island