Visible to the public International Conferences: SIGMETRICS ’15, Portland Oregon

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International Conferences:


Portland, Oregon

The ACM International Conference on Measurement and Modeling of Computer Systems (SIGMETRICS) is the flagship conference of the ACM special interest group for the computer systems performance evaluation community. The 2015 conference was held from June 16-18, 2015 in Portland, Oregon. “Spy vs. Spy: Rumor Source Obfuscation,” by Giulia Fanti (UC Berkeley); Peter Kairouz (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign); Sewoong Oh (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign); Pramod Viswanath (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) was named Best Paper.

The works cited here specifically relate to the Science of Security and were among 63 papers presented. They were recovered pn July 8, 2015. The conference web page is available at   

Giulia Fanti, Peter Kairouz, Sewoong Oh, Pramod Viswanath. “Spy vs. Spy: Rumor Source Obfuscation.” SIGMETRICS '15 Proceedings of the 2015 ACM SIGMETRICS International Conference on Measurement and Modeling of Computer Systems, Pages 271-284, June 2015. Doi: 10.1145/2745844.2745866
Abstract: Anonymous messaging platforms, such as Secret, Yik Yak and Whisper, have emerged as important social media for sharing one's thoughts without the fear of being judged by friends, family, or the public. Further, such anonymous platforms are crucial in nations with authoritarian governments; the right to free expression and sometimes the personal safety of the author of the message depend on anonymity. Whether for fear of judgment or personal endangerment, it is crucial to keep anonymous the identity of the user who initially posted a sensitive message. In this paper, we consider an adversary who observes a snapshot of the spread of a message at a certain time. Recent advances in rumor source detection shows that the existing messaging protocols are vulnerable against such an adversary. We introduce a novel messaging protocol, which we call adaptive diffusion, and show that it spreads the messages fast and achieves a perfect obfuscation of the source when the underlying contact network is an infinite regular tree: all users with the message are nearly equally likely to have been the origin of the message. Experiments on a sampled Facebook network show that it effectively hides the location of the source even when the graph is finite, irregular and has cycles.
Keywords: anonymous social media, privacy, rumor spreading (ID#: 15-6398)

Saleh Soltan, Mihalis Yannakakis, Gil Zussman. “Joint Cyber and Physical Attacks on Power Grids: Graph Theoretical Approaches for Information Recovery.” ACM SIGMETRICS Performance Evaluation Review, Volume 43, Issue 1, Pages 361-374, June 2015. Doi: 10.1145/2745844.2745846
Abstract: Recent events demonstrated the vulnerability of power grids to cyber attacks and to physical attacks. Therefore, we focus on joint cyber and physical attacks and develop methods to retrieve the grid state information following such an attack. We consider a model in which an adversary attacks a zone by physically disconnecting some of its power lines and blocking the information flow from the zone to the grid's control center. We use tools from linear algebra and graph theory and leverage the properties of the power flow DC approximation to develop methods for information recovery. Using information observed outside the attacked zone, these methods recover information about the disconnected lines and the phase angles at the buses. We identify sufficient conditions on the zone structure and constraints on the attack characteristics such that these methods can recover the information. We also show that it is NP-hard to find an approximate solution to the problem of partitioning the power grid into the minimum number of attack-resilient zones. However, since power grids can often be represented by planar graphs, we develop a constant approximation partitioning algorithm for these graphs. Finally, we numerically study the relationships between the grid's resilience and its structural properties, and demonstrate the partitioning algorithm on real power grids. The results can provide insights into the design of a secure control network for the smart grid.
Keywords: algorithms, cyber attacks, graph theory, information recovery, physical attacks, power grids (ID#: 15-6399)


Articles listed on these pages have been found on publicly available internet pages and are cited with links to those pages. Some of the information included herein has been reprinted with permission from the authors or data repositories. Direct any requests via Email to for removal of the links or modifications to specific citations. Please include the ID# of the specific citation in your correspondence.