Stephen R. Tate, Ph.D.
Professor and Department Head

Research Information

My current research is in the area of computer security, with recent projects in both hardware-assisted security and mobile agent security. Recently I have begun looking at issues in software security, and in particular looking at secure and robust implementations for cryptographic and security-oriented software – the goal of this work is to respond to the rash of security vulnerabilities we have seen lately (such as Heartbleed, the Apple "goto fail" bug, and the GnuTLS vulnerabilites) by developing tools and techniques for detecting and eradicating these vulnerabilities.

Results from previous research can be found in published papers and in various freely-available software packages. Our work in in agent security has resulted in in the freely-available SAgent agent security framework (for the JADE agent platform), and work on hardware-based security has produced a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) simulator that accurately reflects not only the functionality but also the performance of TPM v1.1 and v1.2 hardware from a variety of manufacturers.

Funding

My research has been supported by various sources, including the National Science Foundation, the Texas Advanced Research Program, NASA, and equipment donations from industry.

Most recent research and education projects have been funded by the National Science Foundation. My most recent funded research project is in models for trusted computing. I also have an active education-focused NSF-funded project that is focused on developing active-learning activities (using tablets or other devices) in computer science lectures.

Prior Work

In the past, my main research was in algorithm and data structure design and analysis, as well as a strong interest in data compression. I did work in on-line and dynamic algorithms, and I have also done work in parallel algorithms/circuit theory, robotics, and algorithms for molecular dynamics. Several of my papers are available electronically, with links from my publication list.