Security and Privacy Group

The research vision of the Security and Privacy Group at COMSYS is the analysis, design, and evaluation of secure and privacy-preserving communication systems.

To realize this vision, we most notably craft novel security and privacy architectures, paradigms, and mechanisms as well as improve upon existing approaches to security and privacy. We consider all types of systems and networks, e.g. ranging from highly resource-constrained IoT networks to distributed (peer-to-peer) applications and networks and large-scale Cloud deployments.

Our used and developed technologies range from soft privacy solutions such as semantic annotations and behavioral nudges to applied cryptography for strong and provable security and privacy guarantees.

The close cooperation with the other research groups at COMSYS allows us to work closely with domain experts from various types of communication systems.

Currently, we pursue this research vision by tackling the following research topics:

  1. Network Security for the IP-based Internet of Things
    • Secure end-to-end communication of highly resource-constrained devices
    • Delegation of security tasks to less resource-constrained gateways
  2. Security and Privacy in Cloud-based Systems
    • Alternatives to traditional cloud computing
    • Awareness of the usage of cloud services
    • Cloud operations that respect data handling requirements
    • Scalable and secure infrastructures for cloud operations
    • Secure and privacy-preserving outsourcing of sensitive data to the cloud
  3. Privacy Enhancing Techniques (PETs)
    • Quantitative modelling of privacy protection and risk (e.g., Differential Privacy)
    • Secure Two-Party and Multi-Party Computation in mobile scenarios (e.g., Privacy-preserving Indoor Localization)
    • Privacy in distributed scenarios (e.g., Participatory Sensing)
    • Reconciling PETs and user perception of privacy (e.g., empirical user studies)


Current Projects

  • IPACS: Intelligent Privacy-aware Cloud-based Services
  • myneData
  • NEPTUN: Neptun Einigt Privatsphäre-erhaltende Technologien Und Nutzer
  • SSICLOPS: Scalable and Secure Infrastructures for Cloud Operations
  • TRINICS: Transparent Information on the Individual Usage of Cloud Services

Selected Past Projects


Dipl.-Inform. Martin Henze Dipl.-Inform. Martin Henze
Head of Group
+49 241 80-21425
Jens Hiller, M.Sc. Jens Hiller, M.Sc.
+49 241 80-21426
Roman Matzutt, M.Sc. Roman Matzutt, M.Sc.
+49 241 80-21412
Dipl.-Inform. Jan Henrik Ziegeldorf Dipl.-Inform. Jan Henrik Ziegeldorf
+49 241 80-21411

Available Theses

The Security and Privacy Group typically has thesis topics available for motivated and talented students. An excerpt of available theses can be seen from inside the RWTH University network. If you have specific interests, you may contact any group member individually.

Selected Publications

Proceedings of the 15th Workshop on Privacy in the Electronic Society (WPES), co-located with the 23rd ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (CCS), Vienna, Austria , page 99-110.
Publisher: ACM,
October 2016
ISBN: 978-1-4503-4569-9
Andriy Panchenko, Fabian Lanze, Andreas Zinnen, Martin Henze, Jan Pennekamp, Klaus Wehrle and Thomas Engel
23rd Annual Network and Distributed System Security Symposium (NDSS 2016), San Diego, CA, USA
Publisher: Internet Society,
February 2016
ISBN: 1-891562-41-X
Jan Henrik Ziegeldorf, Fred Grossmann, Martin Henze, Nicolas Inden and Klaus Wehrle
The Fifth ACM Conference on Data and Application Security and Privacy (CODASPY 2015), San Antonio, TX, USA
Publisher: ACM,
March 2015
ISBN: 978-1-4503-3191-3