Italy Associate Professor of Computer Science and Engineering University of Bologna Extended Faculty

Marco Prandini is Associate Professor at the University of Bologna, Italy, where he got his PhD in Electronic and Computer Engineering in 2000. Research Associate since 2001, and Professor since 2021.
His research activities started in the field of public-key infrastructures and later moved to subjects related to computing systems security, high availability, and system administration.
More recently, his interests started including the application of security to social fields where computing devices are becoming pervasive, like social networks and e-government.
He is also committed to teaching and to foster knowledge transfer to and from the industry. He has developed the course of System Administration for the Computer Engineering Bachelor Program in his university in 2005 and has been teaching it since then.
He holds the position of Director of the Bologna node in the Italian National Laboratory for Cybersecurity, and he represents the University of Bologna in the European Cybersecurity Organization (ECSO).


Systems security is a prerequisite to achieve information security to the fullest extent. This module deals with the two broad “classical” themes of host security and network security, and their specific characterization in the context of cloud computing. 

The steps to secure a host, whether connected to a network or not, will be illustrated starting from physical security and access control, and proceeding to analyze the most common methods used by attackers to break the configured barriers, as well as the tools that, as a last but fundamental resort, allow to detect a successful break-in. 

Network security will mainly be investigated in terms of tools that add protection layers to host security (since the protection of network traffic between applications is one of the subjects of the Cryptography module). Firewalls and VPNs are the two main subjects discussed in this part of the module.

The same concepts will be expanded with a specific focus on cloud systems, where the concentration of business activities on remote platforms, the total delegation of infrastructural management and the high degree of resource sharing exacerbate the issues of  availability, trust, and authentication/authorization.