I am an associate research scientist of Computer Science Department at Yale University. My research interests cover many fields, including systems, programming languages, security and privacy. I am now working with Ruzica Piskac, Mahesh Balakrishnan, and Avi Silberschatz to improve the reliability of large-scale distributed systems (e.g., preventing correlated failures and configuration errors) by proposing efficient, accurate and rapid auditing techniques. I am also working with Joan Feigenbaum, Bryan Ford and Jean-Pierre Hubaux on building PriFi, the first low-latency and tracking-resistant anonymous communication system.

I received my Ph.D. degree in 2015 from Yale University, under the guidance of Bryan Ford. During my 4-year Ph.D. study, I spent most of my time on building a proactive cloud-reliability auditing system, which was published in OSDI'14 and constitutes the core of my Ph.D. dissertation. I am still working on improving each component of INDaaS now.

Selected Publications

An Auditing Language for Preventing Correlated Failures in the Cloud.
Ennan Zhai, Ruzica Piskac, Ronghui Gu, Xun Lao, and Xi Wang.
32th ACM SIGPLAN International Conference on Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages, and Applications (OOPSLA'17), Oct, 2017.

Synthesizing Configuration File Specifications with Association Rule Learning.
Mark Santolucito, Ennan Zhai, Rahul Dhodapkar, Aaron Shim, and Ruzica Piskac.
32th ACM SIGPLAN International Conference on Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages, and Applications (OOPSLA'17), Oct, 2017.

Resisting Tag Spam by Leveraging Implicit User Behaviors.
Ennan Zhai, Zhenhua Li, Zhenyu Li, Fan Wu and Guihai Chen.
Proceedings of the VLDB, Vol. 10, No. 3.
43rd International Conference on Very Large Data Bases (VLDB'17), Aug, 2017

Probabilistic Automated Language Learning for Configuration Files.
Mark Santolucito, Ennan Zhai, and Ruzica Piskac.
28th International Conference on Computer Aided Verification (CAV'16), Jul, 2016

AnonRep: Towards Tracking-Resistant Anonymous Reputation.
Ennan Zhai, David Isaac Wolinsky, Ruichuan Chen, Ewa Syta, Chao Teng, and Bryan Ford.
13th USENIX Symposium on Networked Systems Design and Implementation (NSDI'16), Mar, 2016.
[PDF]. [Talk Slides].

Heading Off Correlated Failures through Independence-as-a-Service.
Ennan Zhai, Ruichuan Chen, David Isaac Wolinsky, and Bryan Ford.
11th USENIX Symposium on Operating Systems Design and Implementation (OSDI'14), Oct, 2014.
[PDF]. [Technical Report]. [Talk Slides]. [Talk Video]. [The Register News].

Teaching Experience

Professional Service

Last Update: Sep. 2017