Viterbi School of Engineering
University of Southern California
Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA
Office: Henry Salvatori Building (SAL) 200
Performance Modeling and Analysis of Cyber-Security, Economics and Game Theory of Information Security and Privacy
Network Economics, Network Algorithmics and Optimization
Applied Machine Learning, Smart Grid Analytics and Optimization, Security and Privacy Analytics
Statement of Contributions to Diversity
PhD Research Spotlight: USC Graduate School writes about my research, USC News reports my research, Contacted by MIT Technology Review on my research
Publications prior to joining Ph.D (UG, MS)
I am a research scientist at USC's Viterbi School of Engineering. I am associated with the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science departments. I graduated with a Ph.D from the Department of Computer Science at USC in Fall 2014. My thesis advisors were Professors Leana Golubchik and Konstantinos Psounis. For my PhD, I also collaborated with Professor Pan Hui of the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. My current major research interest lies in the area of cyber-security and privacy - especially the economics, performance modeling, strategy, and data analytics aspects of it, with the end goal of being able to make cyber-security and privacy as robust as possible. I also have research interests in network economics, applied game theory, and smart grid analytics and optimization. During my PhD, I was a recipient of the prestigious Provost Fellowship at USC. As a PhD student at USC, I have held visiting research positions at Princeton University and Deutsch Telekom Research Laboratories, Germany. In the past, as an undergraduate and as a masters student, I have held research positions at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, National University of Singapore, University of California, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, India, Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, India, and Center for TeleInfrastruktur, Aalborg University, Denmark. My Erdos number is 4. In my spare time (not that much nowadays :)) I do international travel, listen to music, watch movies, swim, and play/watch cricket and soccer. I also have a deep interest in Indian philosophy.
My Research - Problem Types, Goal, and Tools
I am an applied theory guy currently interested in the economics and performance modeling/analysis of (i) several aspects in the security and privacy of networked and distributed systems (e.g., Internet, social networks, IoT and cyber-physical systems), (ii) mechanisms to optimize real-time energy donations from distributed storage devices to the Smart Grid to maintain supply-demand balance, and (iii) resource management in multi-tenant cloud and ad-driven video streaming systems. My primary research goal is two fold: (a) revealing fundamental insights into the efficient and/or secure design of communication systems by holistically integrating the economics, technical, game theoretic, optimization, learning, and psychological aspects of a research problem, and (b) realizing in practice, the efficient design of communication systems, using computationally efficient tools and experimental economics. More specifically, I do inter-disciplinary research (both fundamental and applied) that lies at the boundary of information security, applied and experimental economics, game theory, algorithms, stochastic processes, network science and graph theory, systems optimization, and applied machine learning. An example of such research is my Ph.D problem, where I investigated the important role of cyber-insurance markets in achieving a robust level of cyber-security, which is currently not present in the Internet due to several techno-social-economic constraints. In this regard, I hypothesized the use cyber-insurance as being an efficient tool that can alleviate these constraints and jointly satisfy the major parties affecting the level of cyber-security today, consequently leading to improved cyber-security. To prove my hypothesis, I had to solve hard problems that required the use of interdisciplinary tools from economics, game theory, network science, and mathematical optimization. Though this proved to be a great challenge for me, at the same time it gave me lot of fun. [My PhD Thesis, My PhD Defense Talk]
My Current Projects
I lead the following research projects at USC.
Publications in my Ph.D
My publications here cover (i) "cyber-insurance" and its impact on improving cyber-security, and (ii) research topics during my various academic internships. I have been the main author in all of the papers, except two
Selected Graduate Coursework
Design and Analysis of Algorithms
Probability Theory and Stochastic Processes
Mathematical Optimization (primarily convex optimization, slight emphasis on vector space optimization)
Network Economics and Network Game Theory
Performance Analysis of Systems
Computer Networks (The Internet, wireless networks, and distributed systems)
Statistical Machine Learning and Graphical Models
1. (Graduate) Analysis of Algorithms: Teaching Assistant, (Fa '13, 'Sp'13, Fa'12, Sp'12, Fa'11, Fa'10), USC Exceptional TA citation from the USC Computer Science Department, 2012-2013
2. Unix and C Programming (Undergraduate Level): Teaching Assistant, Sp'06, UC Davis
3. Research Seminar: Teaching Assistant, Sp'14, USC
4. Fundamentals of Database Systems (Undergraduate Level): Teaching Assistant, Sp'14, USC
1. Improving Network Security Through Insurance: A Tale of Insurance markets - A Tale of Insurance Markets: IBM Research Labs, India and USA, March 2014.
2. On Security Monitoring in Software-Defined Networks - A Game-Theoretic Perspective : T-Labs, USA, March 2013.
3. On Improving Cyber-Security Through Insurance - A Tale of Insurance Markets: Symantec Research Labs, USA, December 2012.
4. Real-Time Pricing in Power Grids: Ecole Polytechnique Federal De Lausanne (EPFL), June 2011
5. An Insurance Approach to Internet Risk Management , Technical University of Lisbon, December 2009.
6. An Insurance Approach to Internet Risk Management , Nokia-Siemens Networks, Portugal, December 2009
I love to travel. Life is boring without it!!!. I consider myself immensely lucky to have travelled to various parts of the world for both, academic as well as for holidaying purposes, at a young age. I generally make short yearly trips with friends, and really enjoy and relish the culture, food, nature, and monumental architecture in all the countries I visit. Listed below are the countries I have visited (airports not included :) ).
Asia: Singapore, Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Malaysia
North America: USA, Canada
Europe: Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, France, Russia, Switzerland, Italy, Vatican City, Holland, Belgium, Denmark, England, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Spain, and Portugal