Privacy violation through improper handling of electronic waste


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Privacy violation through improper handling of electronic waste

by N.n.
Supervisor(s) Josef Noll, Christian Johansen, Adam Szekeres
Due date 2019/05/01
Status Planned
Problem description: Distribution system operators (DSO) represent the link between the electric grid and end-users, as they are responsible for delivering electricity to residential homes, industrial consumers, etc. As the grid quickly evolves into a Smart Grid by the addition of a variety of IoT devices like Smart Meters, more and more personal sensitive information is being collected, transmitted and stored. When devices are replaced, sensitive information might still be present that could end up in the hands of persons trying to take advantage of it causing privacy threats.

The thesis would focus on electronic waste handling practices (current and planned) by identifying

  1. devices storing sensitive information (including but not limited to the Advanced Metering Infrastructure – AMI),
  2. the attributes of the information stored,
  3. regulations regarding the data life-cycle.
  4. etc.

Questions that the thesis might answer:

  1. Is it a reasonable worry that information might be leaked from discarded devices? (Risk owner – Customer)
  2. What are the existing e-waste handling practices?
  3. Are there DSO`s (among the 100+ in Norway) whose customers might face the risk of their information being leaked after storage devices are discarded? (Risk owner – Customer)
  4. Might DSO’s face penalties for negligent handling of discarded devices? (Risk owner – DSO)
Methods and Tools: The tools and methods in this thesis are based on
  • A set of scenario, describing the challenges
  • A list of requirements being extracted from the scenarios
  • A description and evaluation of technologies and tools being candidates for solutions
  • A functional architecture/description of the envisaged system
  • An implementation of the core concepts
  • A demonstration of the solution
  • An evaluation of the solution, including a critical review of the descisions taken earlier
  • Conclusions
  • References
Time schedule The envisaged time schedule (for a long thesis/60 ECTS) is:
T0 0 starting month, T0+m denotes the month where the contribution to a certain chapter shalle be finalized
T0+2 months: create an initial page describing the scenario
T0+3: Provide a list of technologies which you think are necessary for the thesis
T0+4: Establish the table of content (TOC) of the envisaged thesis. Each section shall contain 3-10 keywords describing the content of that section
T0+7: Provide a draft of section 2 (scenario) and 3 (technologies)
T0+10: Establish a draft on what to implement/architecture
T0+11: Set-up an implementation, testing and evaluation plan
T0+15: Evaluate your solution based on a set of parameters, keep in mind there is no such thing as a free lunch
T0+17: Deliver the thesis
Approved Pending by
Keywords IoTSec, Privacy, Electronic waste, DSO, Smart Meter

this page was created by Special:FormEdit/Thesis, and can be edited by Special:FormEdit/Thesis/Privacy violation through improper handling of electronic waste

This page provides hints on what to include in your master thesis.


Title page, abstract, ...

1. Introduction, containing: short intro into the area, what is happening
1.1 Motivation, containing: what triggered me to write about what I'm writing about
1.2 Methods, containing: which methods are you using, how do you apply them
2. Scenario, optional chapter for explaining some use cases
2.1 user scenario, (bad name, needs something bedre)
2.2 Requirements/Technological challenges
3. State-of-the art/Analysis of technology, structure your content after hardware/SW (or other domains). Describe which technologies might be used to answer the challenges, and how they can answer the challenges
3.1 technology A
3.2 technology B
4. Implementation
4.1 Architecture, functionality
5. Evaluation
6. Conclusions


Red line

Your thesis should have a "red line", which is visible throughout the whole thesis. This means you should mention in the beginning of each chapter how the chapter contributes to the "goals of the thesis".

Use of scientific methods

A thesis follows a standard method:

  • describe the problem (problemstilling)
  • extract the challenges. These challenges should be measurable, e.g. method is too slow to be useful to voice handover.
  • Analyse technology with respect to challenges. Don't write & repeat "everything" from a certain technology, concentrate on those parts (e.g. protocols) which are of importance for your problem


  • Wikipedia is good to use to get an overview on what is happening. But there is not scientific verification of Wikipedia, thus you should use wikipedia only in the introduction of a chapter (if you use text from wikipedia). Use scientific literature for your thesis.
  • Scientific library is "at your hand", you can get there directly from UiO: [[How to get access to IEEE, Springer and other scientific literature -> Unik/UiOLibrary]]
  • I suggest that references to web pages, e.g. OASIS, W3C standards, are given in a footnote. Only if you find white papers or other .pdf documents on a web page then you refer to them in the reference section.

Evaluation of own work

Perform an evaluation of your own work. Revisit the challenges and discuss in how you fulfilled them. Provide alternative solution and discuss what should be done (or what could have been done).