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Muhammad Nouman Nafees

Faculty of Science and Engineering
Computing and Information Science
Areas of Expertise:
Cybersecurity and Networking
Research Supervision:

Nouman is a Lecturer in Cyber Security and Forensic Computing at Faculty of Science and Engineering. With a focus on cyber-physical systems security, smart grid cybersecurity, and operational technology resilience, he leverages his research on indicators of compromise analysis, moving target defence strategies, and physics-informed deep learning models. A member of IEEE and ACM, he actively contributes to the academic community through research supervision, peer reviews, and conference presentations, while mentoring the next generation of cybersecurity professionals.

Email: [email protected]


Nouman, with a PhD in Computer Science from Cardiff University (near completion), specializes in cyber-physical systems and smart grid cybersecurity. His research encompasses threat detection, hybrid physics-informed deep learning models for stealthy cyber-attack identification, and innovative Moving Target Defence strategies. At Northumbria University, he contributed to optimizing power consumption in LoRaWAN configurations in sustainable technological solutions.

As a member of IEEE, ACM, and the Chartered Institute of Information Security, Nouman actively engages in continuous professional development. He has received multiple conference grants (ACM CCS, NDSS, ACSAC, IEEE S&P) and a full PhD scholarship from Cardiff University, demonstrating his dedication to advancing cybersecurity methodologies and enhancing the resilience of critical infrastructures.

Research interests
  • Cyber-physical systems security
  • Smart grid and industrial Internet of Things cybersecurity
  • Operational technology resilience
  • Indicators of compromise analysis
  • Moving Target Defence strategies
  • Multiple parameter perturbation techniques
  • Physics-informed deep learning models for contextual anomaly detection
  • Incident response strategies and forensic analysis of cyber incidents
Areas of research supervision

Nouman is keen to supervise PhD students in the areas outlined in his research interests, particularly those engaged in interdisciplinary research.

  • PhD in Computer Science (near completion), Cardiff University
  • BSc (Hons) in Computer Networks and Cyber Security, First-Class Honours, Northumbria University
Memberships, editorial boards
  • Member, IEEE
  • Member, ACM
  • Member, Chartered Institute of Information Security (CIISec)
  • Reviewer, IEEE journals and conferences
  • Reviewer, ACM journals and conferences
Selected recent publications

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N., Cardenas, A., Grijalva, S. and Burnap, P., 2023. Smart grid cyber-physical situational awareness of Complex Operational Technology Attacks: A review. ACM Computing Surveys, 55(10), pp.1-36.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Burnap, P., 2022. Physics-informed anomaly detection in power systems. In: IEEE SmartGridComm 2022, Singapore.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Burnap, P., 2022. Physics-Informed Augmentation for Contextual Anomaly Detection in Smart Grid. ACM CCS 2022, Los Angeles. CCS ’22, pp.3427-3429.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Burnap, P., 2021. Optimized Predictive Control for AGC Cyber Resiliency. In: ACM CCS 2021, Seoul. CCS ’21, pp.2450-2452.

Orr, F., Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Choi, B.J., 2021. Securing publisher-subscriber in smart grid. Electronics, 10(19), p.2355.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N., Burnap, P. and Choi, B.J., 2020. Impact of energy consumption attacks on LoRaWAN-enabled devices. In: ACM CCS 2020, USA.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Burnap, P., 2023. Adaptive moving target defence in power systems. In: ACNS 2023, Kyoto, Japan, 19-22 June 2023.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N. and Burnap, P., 2021. Process control attack detection in substation automation. In: IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy 2021.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N., Khan, R. and Burnap, P., 2020. Relay attack discrimination for situational awareness-based anomaly detection. In: ACSAC 2020, 7-11 December 2020.

Recent presentations and conferences

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N., and Burnap, P., 2022. "Physics-informed anomaly detection in power systems." Presented at IEEE SmartGridComm 2022, Singapore. This presentation focused on the development and application of physics-informed models for detecting anomalies in power systems, showcasing innovative approaches to enhance grid resilience.

Nafees, M.N., Saxena, N., and Burnap, P., 2023. "Adaptive moving target defence in power systems." Presented at ACNS 2023, Kyoto, Japan. This conference presentation highlighted strategies for adaptive moving target defence in power systems, emphasizing the importance of dynamic security measures to counteract evolving cyber threats.