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Using maths to combat malware

Using maths to combat malware

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Full article issued by Federation University.

An ARC-supported researcher at Federation University is using complex mathematics to help in the battle against cybercrime, teaming up with the university’s Internet Commerce Security Lab to develop algorithms that can detect malware in computer systems and networks.

Professor of Optimisation Adil Baghirov, who was awarded a $347,494 Discovery Projects grant, is also developing new methods to solve large problems across different sectors, including water management systems and in artificial intelligence.

Professor Baghirov said the challenge for cybersecurity experts has been to stay ahead of the criminals. He said the most common feature of these attacks was that they were all different to ‘normal’ online behaviour. A key way to combat malware is to deploy data mining and artificial intelligence techniques to detect abnormal online behaviour. This could include everyday online banking transactions.

'We are developing algorithms to detect malware activities so a machine can decide on these activities for itself, based on the algorithms and methods. These activities are completely different to normal activities. Internet banking, for example, is something that people do every day but there are others who are trying to get something illegally, so we need to understand these activities and also how to detect them,' Professor Baghirov says.

Professor Baghirov says the number of challenging problems that relied on complex optimisation to find a solution was growing all the time.

'The evolution of these activities is a big problem. Today you could develop an algorithm to detect certain activities but tomorrow there will be a completely different approach, so you have to develop algorithms that can detect those as well.'


Image Credit: Pixabay (Public Domain).

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