CS Faculty Candidate Lecture: Lotfi ben Othmane

Department of Computer Science faculty candidate Dr. Lotfi ben Othmane, Iowa State University, will present a virtual lecture Friday, April 1, 2022, at 3:00 p.m. His research focuses on software security for cyber-physical systems.

Title: Detecting Intrusion in Connected Vehicles

Abstract: Each vehicle’s Electronic Control Units (ECUs) communicate using an in-vehicle network to control its behavior. Several Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) applications that communicate with the in-vehicle network have been proposed and implemented to improve drivers’ experience and road safety. We describe in this talk the process of injecting messages into the vehicle network to control its behavior and review software vulnerabilities in vehicles that allows achieving that. Then, we discuss the machine learning techniques that we developed to detect the injection of speed and RPM readings messages in the in-vehicle network. Next, we discuss the current challenges of deploying machine learning-based Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS) in vehicles and argue the need to integrate IDS into the vehicle’s resilience mechanisms.

Bio: Dr. Lotfi ben Othmane is the founder of Brainsoft and has been a Teaching Assistant Professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and is leading the Engineering Secure Smart Cyber-Physical Systems Lab at Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa. Previously, he was a Research Scientist and then Head of the Secure Software Engineering department at Fraunhofer SIT, Germany. Dr. Ben Othmane received his Ph.D. from Western Michigan University (WMU), USA, in 2010; the M.S. in computer science from University of Sherbrooke, Canada, in 2000; and the B.S in information systems from University of Economics and Management of Sfax, Tunisia, in 1995. He works on software security for cyber-physical systems. Dr. Ben Othmane is an IEEE Cybersecurity Ambassador.