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BT-MT Dual Degree, MTech and MS in Cyber Security

' This list will change as per the availability of new faculty offering new courses related to the curriculum. '


Core Faculty



The department of Computer Science and Engineering at IIT Kanpur has been offering a good number of courses in Cyber Security related subjects for the last 4 years. Multiple faculty members in the department are engaged in research projects related to cyber security. Therefore, the department feels that it has a critical mass in terms of faculty strength to create new degree programs specializing in cyber security.


Simultaneously, the NASSCOM projects that the country needs cyber security professionals in large numbers – approximately 1 million currently. These professionals also need to have varying degrees of expertise, in order to fulfill their job obligations. The possible roles in cyber security jobs are cyber vulnerability assessment and penetration testing (VAPT) engineers, security operations center (SoC) analysts, security strategists, developers of cyber security tools and technologies, cyber security policy developers, researchers, and chief information security officers (CISO)s etc.


Additionally, a number of Army and Navy officials have personally visited IIT Kanpur, and requested that specialized Masters programs in Cyber Security be offered to defense personnel who upon completion of  their degrees here – could join various positions at the defense CERT (Computer Emergency Response Team), the WESEE (Weapons and Electronics Engineering Center, Indian Navy), the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) , Defense Cyber Agency (DCyA) etc., where cyber security professionals are urgently required.


Due to the confluence of these three facts, the department of CSE is proposing three new master’s programs specializing in Cyber Security. The MTech program in Cyber Security is meant to cater to the students who are likely to take up jobs as VAPT engineers, security center analysis, CERT engineers, cyber security tool developers etc. The MS by research program is designed to train cyber security researchers, technology developers, cyber security strategists, and top-level Cyber Security policy designers. Also, an option for BT-MT dual degree students is proposed to specialize in Cyber Security. This proposal describes the three proposed programs.


Motivation and Goals of the Program

According to the Data Security Council of India’s latest annual Cyber Security India Market report, the cyber security market in India will grow from USD 1.97 billion in 2019 to USD 3.05 billion by 2022. NASSCOM – an industry body for the information technology (IT) industry projected recently that India will need approximately 1 million cyber security professionals in order to protect its cyber space from cyber-attacks. These jobs span diverse sectors including the software product industry, software-based services industry, as well as the government agencies such as NCIIPC (National Critical Information Infrastructure Protection Center), CERT-IN (Computer Emergency Response Team of India), Sector specific CERTs (such as CERT POWER, CERT FINANCE etc.), NIC, Defense CERT, and Defense labs such as WESEE, Defense Intelligence Agency etc.


At the same time, Army and Navy officers have repeatedly requested that IIT Kanpur offer new opportunities for their officers who are deputed to complete their M. Tech at IIT Kanpur. A frequent request has been a degree in Cyber Security in order to train for cyber security related jobs in the Defense. It is worth noting here that the government has recently announced setting up of Defense Cyber Agency (DCyA) for cyber warfare and this agency will require a significant number of well-trained officers.


Our faculty members have been approached by companies such as Intel, AMD, Fortanix, NetApps, NXP Semiconductors, Texas Instruments etc., requesting student interns and future employees who could work in the areas of micro-architecture security, hardware security, secure machine learning etc.


Combined with these three factors is the fact that in the recent years, the Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) department has been offering a large variety of cyber security related courses, and several faculty members are engaged in cyber security related research projects. A fairly good number of Masters’ thesis projects have been completed in cyber security related topics.


Keeping these factors in mind, the CSE department has decided to propose three Masters programs with specialization in Cyber Security. The first proposal is to provide an opportunity for BT-MT dual degree students to specialize in cyber security by fulfilling the same course requirements as the proposed MTech program with this specialization. The second proposal is to create an MTech degree with specialization in Cyber Security, and the third proposal is to create an MS by research program with specialization in Cyber Security.


Nature of Employment for students graduating with Cyber Security Specialization

As mentioned earlier, in the recent past, we have received a number of requests from government and non-government entities for creating specialization program in Cyber Security as there is a severe lack of trained man power in this field. In order for everyone to understand the various job roles available, and to distinguish between the job roles expected to be taken up by graduates of BT-MT dual degree students, MTech students and MS students, here we provide a list of common job types for Cyber Security professionals in India.


Like many fields of engineering, the government and industry need both cyber security generalists who have very broad understanding of various aspects of cyber security and how they interact with each other, as well as domain specialists who focus on a single domain – such as Network Security, Web Security, Vulnerability Assessment, Penetration Testing, Hardware Security etc.  While the first type of role would require breadth and some depth, the second type requires domain specific depth, and hands-on experience in researching the specific domain.


Domain Specialist Jobs
Generalist Jobs


The above list is not exhaustive, but aims to provide aa broad overview of the diverse roles and responsibilities for cyber security professionals. The roles in blue are roles that require training and hands-on experience in domain-specific cyber security technology, and employees with these roles will be doing more hands-on engineering, product development, application engineering of products etc. The roles in bold and green font are roles that would require more breadth and some hands-on experience. Therefore, it is expected that the generalist jobs will be more suitable for students graduating with BT-MT or MTech in Cyber Security while the other jobs will be more appropriate for students graduating with an MS by research in cyber security with a very in-depth thesis component in a specific topic.


Our proposed curriculum is reflective of what courses we currently have on offer, and we believe that in the future, our curriculum will have a broader choice of courses and courses in Cyber Security Ethics, Laws, and Regulations may be introduced.


Curriculum Structure
Table 1 List of Cyber Security Courses Currently Offered
Course No. Course Title  Instructor No. of Credits
Group A: Core Courses 
CS 628 Computer System Security Sandeep K. Shukla 9
CS 641 Modern Cryptography Manindra Agrawal 9
Group B: Cyber Security Courses
CS 631 Cyber Security of Critical Infrastructures Sandeep K. Shukla 9
CS 665 Secure Memory Systems   9
CS 675 Designing Verifiably Secure Systems   9
CS 658 Malware Analysis and Intrusion Detection Sandeep K. Shukla 9
CS 731 Blockchain Technology and Applications Sandeep K. Shukla 9
Group C: Courses Relevant to Cyber Security but not directly on Cyber Security Topics
CS 771 Introduction to Machine Learning ML faculty in CSE  
CS 730 Topics in Operating System Debadatta Mishra  
CS 698 Linux Kernel Programming Debadatta Mishra  
CS 623 Modern Memory Systems    
CS 681 Computational Algebra and Number Theory Nitin Saxena  

The courses CS 628A and CS 641A will be designated as core courses for all proposed Masters programs.


Table 2 summarizes the credit requirements for the various programs.
Program Credit Requirements
MTech Course work = 63 credits, Thesis work: 81 credits. 
18 credits of core courses (Group A in Table 1), 27 credits from courses in Group B, and 9 credits from Group C courses. 9 credits from either Group B or C. 
BT-MT Dual Same as M. Tech
MS (R)

Course work = 36 credits, Thesis work: 108 credits.
18 credits of core courses (Group A in Table 1), 18 credits from courses in Group B.


For MTech

Each student must complete the two core courses from the Group A courses. They also must complete 27 credits (i.e.3 courses of 9 credit hours each) out of the list of courses in Group B and at least 9 credits (i.e. 1 course of 9 credits) from the list of courses in Group C. However, in total, a student must complete a total of 63 credits (7 courses – each of 9 credits) for completing his/her degree requirements. Therefore, they must complete a minimum of 54 credits (6 courses of 9 credits each) from Group A, B and C, another 9 credits can be taken from either group B or Group C, or any other CSE department course with the explicit permission of the DPGC.


The list of courses currently available are listed in the Table 1. It will be extended in the future. The student must also complete thesis work worth 81 thesis credits (9 units). All requirements for MTech program of CSE vis-a- vis thesis work applies. In summary, the total number of credits required for MTech is 144 credits (63 credits in courses, and 81 credits in M. Tech thesis work).


BT-MT Dual Degree

For students in the BT-MT dual degree, minimum 81 credits of thesis work, and 54 credits in course work (with 18 credits of core courses, minimum 27 credits from Group B courses, and minimum 9 credits from Group C courses) must be completed. Another 9 credit PG level course must be taken either from the Group B or Group C or any other course offered by the CSE department with explicit permission of the DUGC.


For MS by Research

Each student must complete 18 credits of core courses and 18 credits of courses from Group B (i.e. 2 courses each of 9 credit hours). The list of courses in Table 1 will be extended in the future. The student must complete thesis credit of 108 credits (12 units). All requirements for MS program in CSE vis-à-vis thesis work will apply.


Initial Intake Plan

The goal is to start with a small size. For the BT-MT program, we propose to accept up to 10 students for the cyber security specialization. For the MTech program -- we plan to initially accept up to 15 students through GATE and 10 students from Defense and Government sectors based on selection by the Defense/Government agencies. For the MS program, 10 students through GATE, and 5 students from Defense, Government, and Industry sector. There will be no GATE requirement for candidates from Defense/Government/Industry sectors. The reservations as per rules will apply.


Table 3 Initial Intake Plan
Program Through GATE Defense/Govt/Sponsored From B. Tech
MTech 15 10 NA
MS (R) 10 5 NA


Admissions Criteria

The admissions for the various programs will be as per the PG manual.