Dr. Tal Shapira

Deep Learning, Computer Networks, and Cybersecurity

Reichman University


Tal Shapira, Ph.D., conducting research in the fields of deep learning, computer networks, and cybersecurity. Currently a Post-Doc at the School of Computer Science, Reichman University. Graduated magna cum laude with a P.hD. and an M.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the School of Electrical Engineering, Tel-Aviv University, and received the B.Sc. degree in physics and minor in mathematics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Co-Founder & Chief Scientist at Reco. Graduate of the Talpiot Excellence Program, with in-depth knowledge of data science, deep learning, big data, and cybersecurity R&D, with a demonstrated history of working in the military industry – head of a cybersecurity group within the Prime Minister’s Office (Israel Defense Award), and as the Head of Algorithms at Guardian Optical Technologies (acquired by Gentex).


Projects, thesis, and dissertations
Anat Bremler-Barr, Tal Shapira, Daniel Alfasi

The proliferation of software vulnerabilities poses a significant challenge for security databases and analysts tasked with their timely identification, classification, and remediation. With the National Vulnerability Database (NVD) reporting an ever-increasing number of vulnerabilities, the traditional manual analysis becomes untenably time-consuming and prone to errors. This paper introduces \VulnScopper, an innovative approach that utilizes multi-modal representation learning, combining Knowledge Graphs (KG) and Natural Language Processing (NLP), to automate and enhance the analysis of software vulnerabilities. Leveraging ULTRA, a knowledge graph foundation model, combined with a Large Language Model (LLM),  VulnScopper effectively handles unseen entities, overcoming the limitations of previous KG approaches.

We evaluate VulnScopper on two major security datasets, the NVD and the Red Hat CVE database. Our method significantly improves the link prediction accuracy between Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs), Common Weakness Enumeration (CWEs), and Common Platform Enumerations (CPEs). Our results show that VulnScopper outperforms existing methods, achieving up to 78% Hits@10 accuracy in linking CVEs to CPEs and CWEs and presenting an 11.7% improvement over large language models in predicting CWE labels based on the Red Hat database.
Based on the NVD, only 6.37% of the linked CPEs are being published during the first 30 days; many of them are related to critical and high-risk vulnerabilities which, according to multiple compliance frameworks (such as CISA and PCI), should be remediated within 15-30 days. We provide an analysis of several CVEs published during 2023, showcasing the ability of our model to uncover new products previously unlinked to vulnerabilities. As such, our approach dramatically reduces the vulnerability remediation time and improves the vulnerability management process.

Projects, thesis, and dissertations
Anat Bremler-Barr, Bar Meyuhas, Tal Shapira

The IoT market is diverse and characterized by a multitude of vendors that support different device functions (e.g., speaker, camera, vacuum cleaner, etc.). Within this market, IoT security
and observability systems use real-time identification techniques to manage these devices effectively. Most existing IoT identification solutions employ machine learning techniques
that assume the IoT device, labeled by both its vendor and function, was observed during their training phase. We tackle a key challenge in IoT labeling: how can an AI solution
label an IoT device that has never been seen before and whose label is unknown?

Our solution extracts textual features such as domain names and hostnames from network traffic, and then enriches these features using Google search data alongside catalog of vendors
and device functions. The solution also integrates an auto-update mechanism that uses Large Language Models (LLMs) to update these catalogs with emerging device types.
Based on the information gathered, the device’s vendor is identified through string matching with the enriched features.
The function is then deduced by LLMs and zero-shot classification from a predefined catalog of IoT functions. In an evaluation of our solution on 97 unique IoT devices,
our function labeling approach achieved HIT1 and HIT2 scores of 0.7 and 0.77, respectively. As far as we know, this is the first research to tackle AI-automated IoT labeling.

Poster and brief announcement
Anat Bremler-Barr, Tal Shapira, Daniel Alfasi

With the continuous increase in reported Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs), security teams are overwhelmed by vast amounts of data, which are often analyzed manually, leading to a slow and inefficient process. To address cybersecurity threats effectively, it is essential to establish connections across multiple security entity databases, including CVEs, Common Weakness Enumeration (CWEs), and Common Attack Pattern Enumeration and Classification (CAPECs). In this study, we introduce a new approach that leverages the RotatE [4] knowledge graph embedding model, initialized with embeddings from Ada language model developed by OpenAI [3]. Additionally, we extend this approach by initializing the embeddings for the relations.

Tal Shapira, Yoval Shavitt
Published in IEEE Transactions on Network and Service Management, 2022,