About this Seminar

In our seminar, you should learn to present research results in a concise manner, both in writing (Seminar Thesis) and speaking (Seminar Presentation). Additionally, you should learn to give proper feedback, for both the presentation and the thesis of other students in this seminar.

To achieve these goals, we have the following main parts in our seminar (in chronological order):

  1. Submission of a preliminary version of the seminar paper.
    This submission is intended to provide a very early feedback on your paper.
  2. Submission of a pre-final version of the seminar paper.
    This is a finished version of your seminar paper that is then reviewed by other students in the seminar.
  3. Submission of the reviews.
    Each student is assigned and has to submit two reviews of their peers papers. The reviews you receive should help you to improve your own paper.
  4. Presentation of your paper.
    This presentation is held in front of the whole seminar, and you grade each other, the presentation that receives the highest grade from their peers receives the “Best Presentation” award. (This grade is independent of the grade you receive from us for the presentation.)
  5. Submission of the final version of the seminar paper.
    This version includes the feedback from the reviews and is the one graded by us.

Additionally, we have presentations on the topics of research, writing, review, and presentation skills. If you want to register to our PANDA course to get access to these presentations (without participating in the seminar), you can use the password SysSec23.


  • The topics are distributed in the first week of the semester.
  • The presentations of the seminar papers will be held as a block seminar at the end of the semester.
    • The date is 13.7. and 14.7. 9:00-14:30


  • 19.5.: Preliminary Version of Seminar Paper
  • 26.6.: Final Version of Seminar Paper
  • 7.7.: Reviews
  • 12.7.: Presentation Slides (you can still change your slides a bit before the talk)
  • 23.7.: Final Version of Seminar Paper

The seminar will be organized over Panda. Deadlines are till the end of the day (23:59 local time/as according to Panda).


We will have five meetings in FU.511, with different topics which will (hopefully) be helpful for you to pass the seminar:

  • 14.4. 9:15 Introduction
  • 21.4. 9:15 Research Skills
  • 28.4. 9:15 Writing Skills
  • 23.6. 9:15 Review Skills
  • 30.6. 9:15 Presentation Skills


The central topic of this seminar are security papers presented at top conferences.


  1. A Tale of Evil Twins: Adversarial Inputs versus Poisoned Models
  2. Abusing Hidden Properties to Attack the Node.js Ecosystem
  3. Bloom Filter Encryption and Applications to Efficient Forward-Secret 0-RTT Key Exchange
  4. Certified Malware: Measuring Breaches of Trust in the Windows Code-Signing PKI
  5. Detecting stuffing of a user’s credentials at her own accounts
  6. DoubleX: Statically Analyzing Browser Extensions at Scale
  7. Доверя́й, но проверя́й: SFI safety for native-compiled Wasm
  8. Favocado: Fuzzing the Binding Code of JavaScript Engines Using Semantically Correct Test Cases
  9. Fingerprinting the Fingerprinters: Learning to Detect Browser Fingerprinting Behaviors
  10. Geneva: Evolving Censorship Evasion Strategies
  11. JAW: Studying Client-side CSRF with Hybrid Property Graphs and Declarative Traversals
  12. LZR: Identifying Unexpected Internet Services
  13. Mining Node.js Vulnerabilities via Object Dependence Graph and Query
  14. Reining in the Web’s Inconsistencies with Site Policy
  15. Saphire: Sandboxing PHP Applications with Tailored System Call Allowlists
  16. SEAL: Attack Mitigation for Encrypted Databases via Adjustable Leakage
  17. Security Analysis of the Democracy Live Online Voting System
  18. SerialDetector: Principled and Practical Exploration of Object Injection Vulnerabilities for the Web
  19. T-Reqs: HTTP Request Smuggling with Differential Fuzzing
  20. TSPU: Russia’s Decentralized Censorship System
  21. Web Cache Deception Escalates!
  22. Who’s Hosting the Block Party? Studying Third-Party Blockage of CSP and SRI
  23. XSinator.com: From a Formal Model to the Automatic Evaluation of Cross-Site Leaks in Web Browsers
  24. ... Your Topic. You can also suggest your own topic by writing a mail to Juraj (juraj.somorovsky@upb.de). DO NOT put a suggested topic on your list without prior approval. 

Grading, Demands, and Expectations

The final grade consists of your presentation (30%), your paper (60%), and your reviews (10%). Additionally, you must meet all deadlines.

Seminar Paper

Preliminary Version

  • at least 5 pages of text (excluding title page, table of contents, references, figures, …)
  • describes the main paper problem
  • briefly describe 2 related papers citing your paper

Final Version

  • Essay written according to the standards of a scientific paper.
    Unless otherwise discussed with us:
    • Your paper should summarize the original paper.
    • You should introduce concepts so that any other student in the seminar can understand your paper. (This does not include basic cryptographic/computer science terms.)
    • Like the preliminary, the final paper version has to describe two papers that cite the original. This should give a broader context for your paper.
  • It MUST be written using our LaTeX template (unchanged).
  • We expect around 15 pages of content, the hard lower limit is 9 pages of text (excluding title page, table of contents, references, figures, …). In most cases, the paper should not be longer than 20 pages of content.


  • 20 minutes presentation. 5 minutes discussion and questions.

The best presentation will be awarded! More information will be given in the first meeting.


We will follow a peer review procedure similar to scientific publications:

  • You submit your paper on PANDA
  • Some (2) peers (other students) review your submission:
    • Read and understand the submitted paper
    • Criticize your paper
    • Make recommendations on how to improve
    • Be honest, polite, and helpful when writing your reviews
  • The reviews you receive will not influence your final grade (but you should address/apply them in your final version)
  • Each student has to write 2 reviews (each 1–2 pages)