Frank Piessens

Frank Piessens

I am a professor in the research group DistriNet (Distributed Systems and Computer Networks) at the Computer Science department of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven.

Research Interests

Since 1999, my main research interests are in the field of software security, where I focus on the development of high-assurance techniques to deal with implementation-level software vulnerabilities and bugs, including techniques such as software verification, run-time monitoring, type systems and language based security. These techniques are relevant for many types of software systems, including web applications, embedded software, mobile applications and so forth.

In the period 1992-1998, I have worked on foundations of semantic modeling. In particular, I studied categorical approaches to semantic modeling. Using sketches as a specification formalism, I investigated the problem of deciding semantic equivalence of specifications.

Selected recent PC memberships


Key publications:

  1. Raoul Strackx, Frank Piessens, Ariadne: A minimal approach to state continuity, Proceedings of the 25th USENIX Security Symposium, Austin, TX, 10-12 August 2016 545063bibtex
  2. Dominique Devriese, Marco Patrignani, Frank Piessens, Fully abstract compilation by approximate back-translation, ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT Symposium om Principles of Programming Languges (POPL 2016), pages 164-177, St. Petersburg, Florida, USA, 20-22 January 2016 download0 517723bibtex
  3. Pieter Agten, Bart Jacobs, Frank Piessens, Sound modular verification of C code executing in an unverified context, Proceedings of the 42nd ACM SIGPLAN-SIGACT Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages (POPL 2015), pages 581-594, Mumbai, India, 15-17 January 2015 download0 471365bibtex
  4. Willem De Groef, Dominique Devriese, Nick Nikiforakis, Frank Piessens, Secure multi-execution of web scripts: Theory and practice, Journal of Computer Security, volume 22, issue 4, pages 469-509, 2014 download0 442492bibtex
  5. Job Noorman, Pieter Agten, Wilfried Daniels, Raoul Strackx, Anthony Van Herrewege, Christophe Huygens, Bart Preneel, Ingrid Verbauwhede, Frank Piessens, Sancus: Low-cost trustworthy extensible networked devices with a zero-software trusted computing base, 22nd USENIX Security symposium, pages 479-494, Washington D.C., 14-16 August 2013 download0 402673bibtex


Contact info

  • Office: 03.167
  • Address:
    Dept. Computer Science
    Celestijnenlaan 200A
    B-3001 Heverlee
  • Tel: +3216327603
  • Fax: +3216327996
  • Email: Frank Piessens