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PhD defence by Matija Stevanovic

Department of Electronic Systems, the Wireless Communications section, is pleased to announce the PhD defence by Matija Stevanovic. Matija will be defending the thesis titled “Machine learning for network-based malware detection”.


27.05.2016 kl. 13.00 - 16.00



“Machine learning for network-based malware detection”


This thesis explores how network traffic analysis can be used for accurate and efficient detection of malware network activities. The thesis focuses on botnet detection by devising novel detection approaches that are aimed at identifying malware network activity at different points in the network and based on different, mutually complementary, principles of traffic analysis. The proposed approaches rely on machine learning algorithms (MLAs) for automated and resource-efficient identification of the patterns of malicious network traffic. We evaluated the proposed methods through extensive evaluations using traffic traces from honeypots and malware testing environments as well as operational ISP net-works. Based on the evaluation, the novel detection methods provide accurate and efficient identification of malicious network traffic, thus being promising in the light of operational deployment. Furthermore, the thesis provides an overview of some of the biggest challenges of using MLAs for identifying malicious network activities. The challenge specially addressed by the thesis is the “ground truth” problem, where we proposed a novel labeling approach for obtaining the ground truth on agile DNS traffic that provides reliable and time-efficient labeling. Finally, the thesis outlines the opportunities for future work on realizing robust and effective detection solutions.

Assessment Committee

Dr. Cyril Onwubiko, Intelligence and Security Assurance, Research Series Ltd, UK
Dr. Kevin Curran, University of Ulster, Ireland
Assoc. Prof. Reza Tadayoni, Aalborg University, Denmark (Chairman)


Assoc. Prof. Jens M. Pedersen, Aalborg University, Denmark


Assoc. Prof. Rasmus L. Olsen, Aalborg University, Denmark

After the defence there will be a reception in room A1-112 at Fredrik Bajers Vej 7A
Please feel welcome to join



Free of charge


Department of Electronic Systems, Wireless Communication Networks Section


Aalborg University, Frederik Bajers Vej 7, room B3-104