Staying Ahead of the Advanced Computing Curve

KENNESAW, Ga. | Oct 3, 2019

Computer science professor’s varied research interests focus on cybersecurity issues

For Dr. Donghyun (David) Kim, most computing research problems fall into two distinct categories: developing ways to make computing processes faster for better results and outcomes or to prevent advanced computing technologies from exploiting unknown security vulnerabilities in current systems. 

“With my backgrounds in computer science, applied mathematics, and electrical engineering, I am fortunate to be able to tackle various real-world problems which fall into more than one category,” said Dr. Kim, associate professor of computer science in Kennesaw State University’s College of Computing and Software Engineering. “Every day I look at news articles on technology to find the latest information so I can see where the research will take me next.”

KSU CCSE associate professor Donghyun (David) Kim

Most of Dr. Kim’s current work is focused on developing new algorithms and protocols for complex computing systems to protect them to fight against unknown cybersecurity threats.

One of those complex computing systems belongs to LexisNexis Risk Solutions, a global data and analytics company based in Atlanta. Dr. Kim and his team are working with the company to develop a log analysis algorithm based on the company’s High Performance Computing Cluster (HPCC) platform, so that log files – records of events that monitor the status of operating systems and/or software runs – can be identified and analyzed for security and compliance in real time.

“Since log files are generated every time a user makes a change to the system, the data continues to grow rapidly and indefinitely, making it more difficult to keep up in detecting unauthorized activities,” Dr. Kim said. “We are developing a new online log correlation analysis system that can handle this output more efficiently as we found most current systems are not equipped for this new level of computing.”

KSU CCSE associate professor Donghyun (David) Kim, center, talks with Jhilakshi Sharma, left, and Hong Kyu Lee in the Security, Privacy, and Advanced Computing Laboratory
KSU CCSE associate professor Donghyun (David) Kim, center, talks with Jhilakshi Sharma, left, and Hong Kyu Lee
In another business context, Dr. Kim recently collaborated with YoKim Marketing to assist in streamlining its social networking services. As a digital marketing firm based in Alpharetta and Marietta, YoKim Marketing wanted to have a more effective and secure system to manage multiple social media accounts for its various small business clients.

“As a business-minded researcher always looking for emerging areas of computer science, I welcome the opportunities to partner with companies in helping them find business intelligence solutions,” he said. 

Dr. Kim added that with these advancements comes the necessary training to stay one step ahead of cyberattacks, which have increased in sophistication, resulting in more damaging effects and leading to national security concerns. That is why Dr. Kim is leading another research project for the National Security Research Institute of South Korea, which is turning toward automation for some components of its cybersecurity training exercises. Dr. Kim is conducting research on developing automated behaviors so that the training can be offered in a group setting, rather than on an individual basis, which costs money and time.

In addition to his research, Dr. Kim also had the opportunity to attend a recent cyber defense training program on industrial control systems through the Idaho National Laboratory in Idaho which was sponsored by U.S. Department of Homeland Security. This training program included a simulated cyberattack within a closed control system to highlight best practices and provide hands-on experience for handling cybersecurity breaches or network attacks on critical infrastructures.  

“The work in academia and industry is interesting and fun as every situation brings a new and exciting angle to my research,” said Dr. Kim.

—Joëlle Walls

Photography by Jason Getz


Related Stories

A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 43,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit