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Computer security is algorithmically intractable

Authors: Brent Kirkpatrick

Journal: The Intrepid Publication Series (TIPS)

Year: 2018

Abstract: Computer security, as a problem, is difficult to define, and when we do invent formal definitions, most of those definitions appear to be undecidable. Building on the work of Alan Turning, where he proved that the halting problem is undecidable, we demonstrate that three definitions related to computer security are undecidable.

Practical computer security must be pursued, regardless of algorithmic intractability. Computer scientists can discover and innovate new tools for computer security that constitute breakthroughs.

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