Dr Nicholas Ayres

Job: Lecturer in Cyber Security

Faculty: Computing, Engineering and Media

School/department: School of Computer Science and Informatics

Address: De Montfort University, The Gateway, Leicester, LE1 9BH

T: N/A

E: nick.ayres@dmu.ac.uk


Personal profile

I am a lecturer in the School of Computer Science and Informatics of De Montfort University conducting research in the Cyber Security Centre. I obtained my B.Sc. in Engineering Information Technology from De Montfort University in 1996, M.Sc. in Cyber Security from De Montfort University in 2014 and PhD degree in Computer Science from De Montfort University in 2021. I started teaching at DMU part time from 2015 and fulltime from 2018. My areas of interest are in automotive technology and security, social engineering and incident response.

Previously I have worked in the IT Industry with a number of high profile organisations who's operations range from IT outsourcing to banking to retail and manufacturing. I specialised in remote server support within enterprise management as well as customer/SOC integration.

I have also worked with the Leicestershire Police for over 12 years in various roles. I am a qualified vehicle examiner which includes forensic analysis of vehicle history and identity. I have also worked with the Economic Crime Unit in providing full asset management as well as chain of custody on property siezed under The Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 (PACE) as part of the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) 2002. My last role involved setting up the first online disposal mechanism for property siezed as part of POCA.

Research group affiliations

Cyber Technology Institute (CTI)

Publications and outputs

Lambat, Y., Ayres, N., Maglaras, L. and Ferrag, M.A., 2021. A Mamdani Type Fuzzy Inference System to Calculate Employee Susceptibility to Phishing Attacks. Applied Sciences, 11 (19), p.9083.

Ayres, N., Deka, L. and Paluszczyszyn, D., 2021. Continuous Automotive Software Updates through Container Image Layers. Electronics, 10 (6), p.739.

Ayres, N., Deka, L. and Passow, B., 2019, August. Virtualisation as a means for dynamic software update within the automotive E/E architecture. In 2019 IEEE SmartWorld, Ubiquitous Intelligence & Computing, Advanced & Trusted Computing, Scalable Computing & Communications, Cloud & Big Data Computing, Internet of People and Smart City Innovation (SmartWorld/SCALCOM/UIC/ATC/CBDCom/IOP/SCI) (pp. 154-157). IEEE.

Deka, L., Khan, S.M., Chowdhury, M. and Ayres, N., 2018. Transportation cyber-physical system and its importance for future mobility. In Transportation Cyber-Physical Systems (pp. 1-20). Elsevier.

Ayres, N., Maglaras, L. and Janicke, H., 2017. OSNs as Cyberterrorist Weapons against the General Public. In Threat Mitigation and Detection of Cyber Warfare and Terrorism Activities (pp. 179-197). IGI Global.

Ayres, N. and Maglaras, L.A., 2016. Cyberterrorism targeting the general public through social media. Security and Communication Networks, 9(15), pp.2864-2875.

Ayres, N., Maglaras, L.A., Janicke, H., Smith, R. and He, Y., 2016. The mimetic virus: a vector for cyberterrorism. International Journal of Business Continuity and Risk Management, 6(4), pp.259-271.

Research interests/expertise

  • Automotive technology and security
  • Social engineering
  • Cyber physical systems
  • Incident response
  • Raspberry Pi

Areas of teaching

Cyber Security, computer science


  • Ph.D. Department of Computing, Engineering and Media, De Montfort University, 2021
  • MSc in Cyber Security (Distinction) De Montfort University, 2014
  • BSc in Engineering Information Technology (2:1) De Montfort University 1996

Courses taught


2020/2021 CTEC3410 Web Application Penetration Testing

2020/2021 CTEC2913 Cyber Threat Inteligence and Incident Response (Module Lead)

2019/20 CTEC3426 Telematics

2019/20 CTEC2912 Linux Security

2019-2022 CTEC3753 Emerging Tpoics in Security (Module Lead)

2018-2020 IMAT1608 Introduction to ICT (Module Lead)

2018-2020 IMAT1209 Devices and Networks (Module Lead)


2020-2022 CTEC5802 Cyber Threat Intelligence

2020-2022 CTEC5892 Cyber Threat Intelligence

Externally funded research grants information


[2021-2022] Resilient Communications for autonomous transport [BA UK- PI] The project will focus on securing autonomous transport. The main focus will be to adapt the SecurityOperation Center (SOC) concept for detecting, understanding, and responding to attacks on vehicles, airplanes, and vessels and connected mobility infrastructure (e.g. WiFi, 5G, etc). The project will define measurable aspects of a SOC that can be optimized during a SOC’s development, exercised, and reevaluated regularly to ensure ongoing effectiveness. This will be important for manufacturers to report to authorities about their operational capabilities. Finally, the project will build more resilient communications within the automated nodes themselves, recognizing that the SOC model might be too slow to detect and react to safety-related incidents before it is too late.



ORCID number