Studying online

There are now 2 possible online modes for units:

Units with modes Online timetabled and Online flexible are available for any student to self-enrol and study online.

Click on an offering mode for more details.

Unit Overview


This unit covers different types of security vulnerabilities of computer systems and how to prevent and mitigate the effects of them. Topics include: (1) memory and Arithmetic Errors; (2) validated input and inter-process communication; (3) race conditions and file operations; (4) cryptographic practises; and (5) development practices.

6 points
(see Timetable)
Semester 1UWA (Perth)Face to face
Details for undergraduate courses
  • Level 3 core unit in the International Cybersecurity; Cybersecurity; Software Engineering; Quantum Computing major sequences
  • Level 3 option in the Computer Science major sequence

Students are able to (1) demonstrate an understanding of the basic execution model of computer programs and how programs represent and access their resources; (2) explain a range of common software vulnerabilities, the threats that they pose to correct execution, and steps to mitigate them; (3) validate a program's input data and external connections; (4) apply industry standard secure programming practices; and (5) develop a systems approach to the evaluation of a software system to identify security vulnerabilities.


Indicative assessments in this unit are as follows: (1) tests; (2) project; and (3) exam. Further information is available in the unit outline.

Student may be offered supplementary assessment in this unit if they meet the eligibility criteria.

Unit Coordinator(s)
Mr Arran Stewart
Unit rules
Successful completion of
CITS2200 Data Structures and Algorithms
or CITS2002 Systems Programming
or CITS2005 Object Oriented Programming
or CITS2402 Introduction to Data Science
Advisable prior study
CITS2002 Systems Programming
Contact hours
lectures: 2 hours per week
laboratories: 2 hours per week.
  • The availability of units in Semester 1, 2, etc. was correct at the time of publication but may be subject to change.
  • All students are responsible for identifying when they need assistance to improve their academic learning, research, English language and numeracy skills; seeking out the services and resources available to help them; and applying what they learn. Students are encouraged to register for free online support through GETSmart; to help themselves to the extensive range of resources on UWA's STUDYSmarter website; and to participate in WRITESmart and (ma+hs)Smart drop-ins and workshops.
  • Unit readings, including any essential textbooks, are listed in the unit outline for each unit, one week prior the commencement of study. The unit outline will be available via the LMS and the UWA Handbook one week prior the commencement of study. Reading lists and essential textbooks are subject to change each semester. Information on essential textbooks will also be made available on the Essential Textbooks. This website is updated regularly in the lead up to semester so content may change. It is recommended that students purchase essential textbooks for convenience due to the frequency with which they will be required during the unit. A limited number of textbooks will be made available from the Library in print and will also be made available online wherever possible. Essential textbooks can be purchased from the commercial vendors to secure the best deal. The Student Guild can provide assistance on where to purchase books if required. Books can be purchased second hand at the Guild Secondhand bookshop (second floor, Guild Village), which is located on campus.
  • Contact hours provide an indication of the type and extent of in-class activities this unit may contain. The total amount of student work (including contact hours, assessment time, and self-study) will approximate 150 hours per 6 credit points.