study programme

Information Security

Original title in Czech: Informační bezpečnostFaculty: FEECAbbreviation: DPC-IBEAcad. year: 2023/2024

Type of study programme: Doctoral

Study programme code: P0688D060003

Degree awarded: Ph.D.

Language of instruction: Czech

Accreditation: 8.10.2019 - 7.10.2029

Mode of study

Full-time study

Standard study length

4 years

Programme supervisor

Doctoral Board

Fields of education

Area Topic Share [%]
Electrical Engineering Without thematic area 80
Informatics Without thematic area 20

Study aims

The student is fostered to use the theoretical knowledge and experience gained through own research activities in an innovative manner. He is able to efficiently use the gathered knowledge for the design of own and prospective solutions within their further experimental development and applied research. The emphasis is put on gaining both theoretical and practical skill, ability of self-decisions, definition of research and development hypotheses to propose projects spanning from basic to applied research, ability to evaluation of the results and their dissemination as research papers and presentation in front of the research community.

Graduate profile

The study program aims at scientific preparation of doctoral students with deep theoretical knowledge of cryptography and system security. Most study courses are focused on applied mathematics, informatics and telecommunication technologies. The graduate has detailed knowledge about communication and information systems, data transfer and its security, including the use and design of software applications. She is able to analyze modern ciphers and cryptographic protocols, evaluate their security and propose their concrete usage in communication systems. She has a deep knowledge of operating systems, programming languages, database systems, distributed applications, etc. She is also experienced in task algoritmization. She is able to design novel technological solutions for telecommunications with high security standards. The graduate is able to understand and design modern cryptographic systems.

Profession characteristics

Graduates of the program "Information Security" will be positioned in research, development and design teams, in expert groups of production or business organizations, in the academic sphere and in other institutions involved in science, research, development and innovation, in all companies where communication systems and secure information transfer through data networks are being applied and used.
Our graduates are particularly experienced in the analysis, design, creation or management of complex systems aimed for secure data transfer and processing, as well as in the programming, integration, support, maintenance or sale of these systems.

Fulfilment criteria

Doctoral studies are carried out according to the individual study plan, which will prepare the doctoral student in cooperation with the doctoral student at the beginning of the study. The individual study plan specifies all the duties stipulated in accordance with the BUT Study and Examination Rules, which the doctoral student must fulfill to successfully finish his studies. These responsibilities are time-bound throughout the study period, they are scored and fixed at fixed deadlines. The student enrolls and performs tests of compulsory courses, obligatory elective subjects with regard to the focus of his dissertation, and elective courses (English for PhD students, Solutions for Innovative Entries, Scientific Publishing from A to Z).
The student may enroll for the state doctoral exam only after all the tests prescribed by his / her individual study plan have been completed. Before the state doctoral exam, the student prepares a dissertation thesis describing in detail the goals of the thesis, a thorough evaluation of the state of knowledge in the area of ​​the dissertation solved, or the characteristics of the methods it intends to apply in the solution. The defense of the controversy that is opposed is part of the state doctoral exam. In the next part of the exam the student must demonstrate deep theoretical and practical knowledge in the field of cryptology, system security, network security and electrical engineering, electronics. The State Doctoral Examination is in oral form and, in addition to the discussion on the dissertation thesis, it also consists of thematic areas related to compulsory and compulsory elective subjects.
To defend the dissertation, the student reports after the state doctoral examination and after fulfilling conditions for termination, such as participation in teaching, scientific and professional activity (creative activity) and at least a monthly study or work placement at a foreign institution or participation in an international creative project .

Study plan creation

The doctoral studies of a student follow the Individual Study Plan (ISP), which is defined by the supervisor and the student at the beginning of the study period. The ISP is obligatory for the student, and specifies all duties being consistent with the Study and Examination Rules of BUT, which the student must successfully fulfill by the end of the study period. The duties are distributed throughout the whole study period, scored by credits/points and checked in defined dates. The current point evaluation of all activities of the student is summarized in the “Total point rating of doctoral student” document and is part of the ISP. At the beginning of the next study year the supervisor highlights eventual changes in ISP. By October, 15 of each study year the student submits the printed and signed ISP to Science Department of the faculty to check and archive.
Within the first four semesters the student passes the exams of compulsory, optional-specialized and/or optional-general courses to fulfill the score limit in Study area, and concurrently the student significantly deals with the study and analysis of the knowledge specific for the field defined by the dissertation thesis theme and also continuously deals with publishing these observations and own results. In the follow-up semesters the student focuses already more to the research and development that is linked to the dissertation thesis topic and to publishing the reached results and compilation of the dissertation thesis.
By the end of the second year of studies the student passes the Doctor State Exam, where the student proves the wide overview and deep knowledge in the field linked to the dissertation thesis topic. The student must apply for this exam by April, 30 in the second year of studies. Before the Doctor State Exam the student must successfully pass the exam from English language course.
In the third and fourth year of studies the student deals with the required research activities, publishes the reached results and compiles the dissertation thesis. As part of the study duties is also completing a study period at an abroad institution or participation on an international research project with results being published or presented in abroad or another form of direct participation of the student on an international cooperation activity, which must be proved by the date of submitting the dissertation thesis.
By the end of the winter term in the fourth year of study students submit the elaborated dissertation thesis to the supervisor, who scores this elaborate. The final dissertation thesis is expected to be submitted by the student by the end of the fourth year of studies.
In full-time study form, during the study period the student is obliged to pass a pedagogical practice, i.e. participate in the education process. The participation of the student in the pedagogical activities is part of his/her research preparations. By the pedagogical practice the student gains experience in passing the knowledge and improves the presentation skills. The pedagogical practice load (exercises, laboratories, project supervision etc.) of the student is specified by the head of the department based on the agreement with the student’s supervisor. The duty of pedagogical practice does not apply to students-payers and combined study program students. The involvement of the student in the education process within the pedagogical practice is confirmed by the supervisor in the Information System of the university.

What degree programme types may have preceded

The study program directly follows the Bachelor´s and Master´s study programs Information Security at FEKT, BUT.

Issued topics of Doctoral Study Program

  1. Cyberranges and Gamification in Education

    The topic is focused on research and implementation of novel trends in cybersecurity education and training, in particular on the use of virtualization techniques and cyberranges. Student will focus on the research of novel methods and tools for the realization of cyberranges and their deployment into practical courses, including final evaluation. Student’s paid involvement in research projects at the UTKO department is expected.

    Tutor: Hajný Jan, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  2. Cybersecurity in Inteligent Transport Systems

    The research will focus on the analysis of threats, vulnerabilities and security methods in Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS), the Internet of Vehicles, inter-vehicle/intra-vehicle communication and associated digital systems and services in transportation. The work will further deal with how to secure these smart transport systems in an agile, robust and sustainable manner. The minor goal of the work is research of the protection of user privacy in ITS services. The participation on Department’s national and international research projects is expected.

    Tutor: Malina Lukáš, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  3. Digital data forensics

    The study deals with forensic methods to obtain digital evidence from mass storage devices and volatile memory. The goal is to optimize searching for evidence including the links between them. An example is searching for links between the system journal entries on more devices. The student can deal with various types of devices and operating systems.

    Tutor: Komosný Dan, prof. Ing., Ph.D.

  4. Eavesdropping speech signals using optical fibers

    It is known that the optical fiber can capture acoustic waves travelling across it. The goal of the PhD student would be to explore this type of eavesdropping on speech signals, map its possibilities and weaknesses, and last but not the least, process the captured signals, denoise them and analyze.

    Tutor: Rajmic Pavel, prof. Mgr., Ph.D.

  5. Hardware-Accelerated Cryptography

    The topic is aimed on research and development in the field of hardware-accelerated algorithms on the FPGA platform. Student will focus on methods of secure implementation with protection against side-channel attacks. Student’s paid involvement in research projects at the UTKO department is expected.

    Tutor: Hajný Jan, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  6. Methods for penetration testing of computer network devices

    The topic is focused on research and design of new methods that can be used during the security testing (including penetration test) with focus on IPv6 suite (Internet Protocol version 6) especially. The research is focused on suitable methods for network infrastructure testing, end devices testing and also for testing of other dedicated devices.

    Tutor: Jeřábek Jan, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  7. Modern Authentication and Electronic Service Access Control

    The topic is focused on the research and development of novel cryptographic mechanisms for user authentication. Student will focus on the methods of strong authentication for online services based on multiple factors (smart cards, tokens, telephones) and their formal security proofs. Student’s paid involvement in research projects at the UTKO department is expected.

    Tutor: Hajný Jan, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  8. Post-Quantum Cryptographic Protocols

    The topic aims at the analysis, design and optimization of modern post-quantum cryptographic (PQC) protocols. The research can be more focused on the one of current open problems such as post-quantum security in blockchain technology, quantum-resistant privacy-preserving methods, PQC on constrained devices, quantum-resistant hybrid methods, hardware acceleration of PQC at FPGA platforms, etc. The participation on Department’s national and international research projects is expected.

    Tutor: Malina Lukáš, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  9. Privacy-enhancing cryptography in the post-quantum era

    Quantum attack-resistant cryptography is a very current topic. With the advent of quantum computers, all current asymmetric cryptographic schemes, such as RSA, DSA, and ECC, will be broken. These threats are already being addressed at the level of international organizations and standardization bodies, e.g., NIST. On the other hand, privacy-enhancing technology increases the protection of users by minimizing personal data use, maximizing data security, and empowering individuals. This can be achieved with privacy-by-design methods such as group signatures, decentralized systems, and secure computations. Currently, Several quantum-secure schemes have been proposed and NIST announced the finalists for standardization in 2022. However, these signatures and key-encapsulation schemes lack privacy features. The topic will focus on the design, development and implementation of privacy-enhancing characteristics of quantum-resistant schemes.

    Tutor: Ricci Sara, M.Sc., Ph.D.

  10. Privacy-enhancing technologies for digital identity protection

    The protection of users’ privacy and their digital identities is currently a hot topic. In fact, the European Union (EU) addresses the protection of personal data and EU citizens’ privacy by enforcing the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). The Ph.D. topic is focused on cryptographic methods for protecting users’ digital identities by deploying Privacy-Enhancing Technologies (PETs). PETs technologies allow increasing the privacy of users and, therefore, they find application in systems such as e-Voting and cryptocurrencies. Other examples are current solutions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, i.e. COVID passes and contact tracing applications. However, PETs technologies face many challenges, including high computational complexity, insufficient privacy protection, problematic revocation, or resistance to attacks from quantum computers. The aim of the dissertation thesis will be to design and implement cryptographic schemes suitable for use in the current Internet of Things (IoT) systems, including the use of wearable devices. The proposed schemes must be secure and enhance users’ privacy in current application scenarios. To do so, the use of decentralized systems such as blockchain technology and secure multi-party computing will be considered as well.

    Tutor: Dzurenda Petr, Ing., Ph.D.

  11. Quantum and Post-Quantum Cryptography

    The topic is aimed on research and development in the field quantum-safe systems for key establishment and encryption. Student will focus on methods of quantum and post-quantum systems combination and practical aspects of implementation into existing networks in BUT quantum lab. Student’s paid involvement in research projects at the UTKO department is expected.

    Tutor: Hajný Jan, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  12. Security and Privacy in Intelligent Infrastructures

    The topic focuses on the research of applied modern cryptography (light cryptography, schemes with privacy protection, authentication and key management) and optimization of schemes within intelligent networks such as Internet of Everything, Internet of vehicles and smart cities. The research deals in more detail with the design of secure decentralized and heteregenous networks and services with enhanced privacy protection of users. The participation on Department’s national and international research projects is expected.

    Tutor: Malina Lukáš, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  13. Security in Converged Networks

    The aim is to analyse the up-to-date development and trends in the area of converged networks, mainly the problems of protection against cyber attacks. The areas of 5G mobile, SDN (Software Defined Networks) and related transmission technologies are seemed to be among the perspective possibilities. Design of innovative or new protection methods is supposed to be based on obtained observation. The research requires an orientation in the networks area, experience with MATLAB or SCILAB programs, and knowledge of at least one of VHDL, C or Java languages, evolutionary algorithms, and possibly use of the system FPGA.

    Tutor: Škorpil Vladislav, doc. Ing., CSc.

  14. Security of IP telephony

    The work will focus on research in the field of IP telephony security. It will include an analysis of protocols that providing VoIP telephony, known attacks, design and verification of new attacks. On the basis of the analyses will be proposed approaches to eliminate or minimize the impact of researched attacks on VoIP traffic. Individual approaches will be tested in practical implementations.

    Tutor: Šilhavý Pavel, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  15. Testbed for evaluation of communication technologies for Smart Grids

    The aim of this work is to design a comprehensive model of communication technologies for Smart Grids networks. This model will be deployed and be verified in a simulation and laboratory environment. Another goal of this work is to design and experimentally verify the methodology of evaluation of communication technologies and their security for Smart Grids networks.

    Tutor: Mlýnek Petr, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

1. round (applications submitted from 01.04.2023 to 30.04.2023)

  1. Optical fiber infrastructure security

    Fiber optic networks have evolved rapidly in recent years to meet the ever-increasing demand for increasing capacity. Today, optical fibers are widely used in all types of networks due to not only transmission speed or maximum achievable distance but also security. Although fiber optic networks are considered completely secure, there are ways to capture or copy part of the data signal. Both imperfections of passive optical components and, for example, monitoring outputs of active devices can be used. With the advent of quantum computers, current encryption could be broken. It is therefore necessary to address the security of fiber-optic networks, analyze security risks and propose appropriate countermeasures.

    Tutor: Münster Petr, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  2. Quantum key distribution in telecommunication networks

    Today's digital world is dependent on data security during communication but also in storage, for example in e-banking, e-commerce, e-health or e-government. With the advent of quantum computers, there is a risk of potential security breaches today. Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) provides a way to distribute and share secret keys that are necessary for cryptographic protocols. The information is coded into individual photons. Integrating QKD systems into existing network infrastructure used for telecommunications is a topical challenge. Some other major challenges include increasing of the key rate, increasing the range of the QKD system, or reducing the complexity and robustness of existing solutions.

    Tutor: Münster Petr, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

  3. Research of system for testing of security and safety

    The aim of this work is to design methods and tools for verification of security and safety of equipment deployed for real operation. The work is mainly focused on end devices for power engineering and industry deployed within Smart Grids and Industry 4.0 concepts and their verification from the view of security threats and functional errors.

    Tutor: Mlýnek Petr, doc. Ing., Ph.D.

Course structure diagram with ECTS credits

Any year of study, winter semester
AbbreviationTitleL.Cr.Com.Compl.Hr. rangeGr.Op.
DPC-PKRAdvanced Cryptographycs4CompulsoryDrExS - 39yes
DPC-TK1Optimization Methods and Queuing Theorycs4Compulsory-optionalDrExS - 39yes
DPC-MA1Statistics, Stochastic Processes, Operations Researchcs4Compulsory-optionalDrExS - 39yes
DPX-JA6English for post-graduatesen4ElectiveDrExCj - 26yes
DPC-RIZSolving of innovative taskscs2ElectiveDrExS - 39yes
DPC-EIZScientific publishing A to Zcs2ElectiveDrExS - 26yes
Any year of study, summer semester
AbbreviationTitleL.Cr.Com.Compl.Hr. rangeGr.Op.
DPC-BSZSystem and Device Securitycs4CompulsoryDrExS - 39yes
DPC-MA2Discrete Processes in Electrical Engineeringcs4Compulsory-optionalDrExS - 39yes
DPC-RE2Modern digital wireless communicationcs4Compulsory-optionalDrExS - 39yes
DPC-TE2Numerical Computations with Partial Differential Equationscs4Compulsory-optionalDrExS - 39yes
DPX-JA6English for post-graduatesen4ElectiveDrExCj - 26yes
DPC-CVPQuotations in a research workcs2ElectiveDrExS - 26yes
DPC-RIZSolving of innovative taskscs2ElectiveDrExS - 39yes
Any year of study, both semester
AbbreviationTitleL.Cr.Com.Compl.Hr. rangeGr.Op.
DPX-QJAEnglish for the state doctoral examen4ElectiveDrExK - 3yes