Cyber crime

Combating cyber crime

As technology develops, more and more of our personal and confidential data is available online and potentially vulnerable to breaches in security. Researchers from LJMU’s Department of Computer Science are responding to demands for security to be one step ahead of the latest advances in cyber crimes.

Members of LJMU's Network and Information Security Technology Laboratory (NISTL) focus their efforts on the research and development of integrated frameworks to systematically handle security issues by preventing, detecting and investigating cyber-attacks. Their partnership with a major electronic systems company, Thales Research and Technology (UK) Ltd., provided an ideal opportunity to combine academic research findings with Thales’ expertise in developing secure systems technology. This collaboration enabled three invention disclosures and one security enhanced commercial solution to be delivered.

The software tool that was released as a result of this collaboration, called MATTS (Mobile Agent Topology Test System), is used for exploring, modelling and managing security in complex networked systems. In 2009 the visualisation component of MATTS was made freely available to download in an open source format. By 2013 it had been downloaded over 14,000 times, helping organisations to model complex system data and interaction.

This work led to international recognition and collaboration with 16 other partners across 9 EU countries to secure a €9.6 million grant to develop secure and composite systems to enhance cyber security on a European scale.

NISTL researchers have also developed and patented a new method in forensic analysis for searching for malicious data stored in computers, being able to search through huge quantities of data quickly. This novel approach was patented in 2009 leading to a joint venture with Tubedale Communications Ltd. to establish a spin-out company called Forsigs.

Forsigs worked with a number of law enforcement organisations including the Merseyside Police High Tech Crime Unit, who have used the technique to increase speed and efficiency of investigations.

Find out more about the research within the Department of Computer Science.

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