Visible to the public Biblio

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2021-04-28
Meadows, B., Edwards, N., Chang, S.-Y..  2020.  On-Chip Randomization for Memory Protection Against Hardware Supply Chain Attacks to DRAM. 2020 IEEE Security and Privacy Workshops (SPW). :171—180.

Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) is widely used for data storage and, when a computer system is in operation, the DRAM can contain sensitive information such as passwords and cryptographic keys. Therefore, the DRAM is a prime target for hardware-based cryptanalytic attacks. These attacks can be performed in the supply chain to capture default key mechanisms enabling a later cyber attack or predisposition the system to remote effects. Two prominent attack classes against memory are the Cold Boot attack which recovers the data from the DRAM even after a supposed power-down and Rowhammer attack which violates memory integrity by influencing the stored bits to flip. In this paper, we propose an on-chip technique that obfuscates the memory addresses and data and provides a fast detect-response to defend against these hardware-based security attacks on DRAM. We advance the prior hardware security research by making two contributions. First, the key material is detected and erased before the Cold Boot attacker can extract the memory data. Second, our solution is on-chip and does not require nor depend on additional hardware or software which are open to additional supply chain attack vectors. We analyze the efficacy of our scheme through circuit simulation and compare the results to the previous mitigation approaches based on DRAM write operations. Our simulation and analysis results show that purging key information used for address and data randomization can be achieved much faster and with lower power than with typical DRAM write techniques used for sanitizing memory content. We demonstrate through circuit simulation of the key register design a technique that clears key information within 2.4ns which is faster by more than two orders magnitude compared to typical DRAM write operations for 180nm technology, and with a power consumption of 0.15 picoWatts.

Westphall, J., Loffi, L., Westphall, C. M., Martina, J. Everson.  2020.  CoAP + DTLS: A Comprehensive Overview of Cryptographic Performance on an IOT Scenario. 2020 IEEE Sensors Applications Symposium (SAS). :1—6.
Internet of things (IoT) and Fog computing applications deal with sensitive data and need security tools to be protected against attackers. CoAP (Constrained Application Protocol), combined with DTLS (Datagram Transport Layer Security), provides security to IoT/Fog applications. However, processing times need to be considered when using this combination due to IoT/Fog environment constraints. Our work presents a CoAP with DTLS application and analyzes the performance of Raspberry Pi 3 during DTLS handshakes, data encryption and data decryption with the most relevant cipher suites. The performance of confirmable and non-confirmable CoAP POST requests is also measured and discussed in our work. We discovered that cipher suites that use RSA as an authentication method on handshake are slightly faster than cipher suites that use ECDSA, while symmetric key encryption with AES256(128)GCM are 40% faster than AES256(128) default modes. Our study also suggests CoAP modifications to obtain higher efficiency, and it might help future IoT/Fog application developers to understand CoAP and DTLS union, providing an application example and performance metrics.
Wang, X., Shen, Q., Luo, W., Wu, P..  2020.  RSDS: Getting System Call Whitelist for Container Through Dynamic and Static Analysis. 2020 IEEE 13th International Conference on Cloud Computing (CLOUD). :600—608.
Container technology has been used for running multiple isolated operating system distros on a host or deploying large scale microservice-based applications. In most cases, containers share the same kernel with the host and other containers on the same host, and the application in the container can make system calls of the host kernel like a normal process on the host. Seccomp is a security mechanism for the Linux kernel, through which we can prohibit certain system calls from being executed by the program. Docker began to support the seccomp mechanism from version 1.10 and disables around 44 system calls out of 300+ by default. However, for a particular container, there are still many system calls that are unnecessary for running it allowed to be executed, and the abuse of system calls by a compromised container can trigger the security vulnerabilities of a host kernel. Unfortunately, Docker does not provide a way to get the necessary system calls for a particular container. In this paper, we propose RSDS, a method combining dynamic analysis and static analysis to get the necessary system calls for a particular container. Our experiments show that our solution can reduce system calls by 69.27%-85.89% compared to the default configuration on an x86-64 PC with Ubuntu 16.04 host OS and does not affect the functionalities of these containers.
Kabir, H., Mohsin, M. H. Bin, Kantola, R..  2020.  Implementing a Security Policy Management for 5G Customer Edge Nodes. NOMS 2020 - 2020 IEEE/IFIP Network Operations and Management Symposium. :1—8.

The upcoming 5th generation (5G) mobile networks need to support ultra-reliable communication for business and life-critical applications. To do that 5G must offer higher degree of reliability than the current Internet, where networks are often subjected to Internet attacks, such as denial of service (DoS) and unwanted traffic. Besides improving the mitigation of Internet attacks, we propose that ultra-reliable mobile networks should only carry the expected user traffic to achieve a predictable level of reliability under malicious activity. To accomplish this, we introduce device-oriented communication security policies. Mobile networks have classically introduced a policy architecture that includes Policy and Charging Control (PCC) functions in LTE. However, in state of the art, this policy architecture is limited to QoS policies for end devices only. In this paper, we present experimental implementation of a Security Policy Management (SPM) system that accounts communication security interests of end devices. The paper also briefly presents the overall security architecture, where the policies set for devices or services in a network slice providing ultra-reliability, are enforced by a network edge node (via SPM) to only admit the expected traffic, by default treating the rest as unwanted traffic.

Islam, M., Rahaman, S., Meng, N., Hassanshahi, B., Krishnan, P., Yao, D. D..  2020.  Coding Practices and Recommendations of Spring Security for Enterprise Applications. 2020 IEEE Secure Development (SecDev). :49—57.
Spring security is tremendously popular among practitioners for its ease of use to secure enterprise applications. In this paper, we study the application framework misconfiguration vulnerabilities in the light of Spring security, which is relatively understudied in the existing literature. Towards that goal, we identify 6 types of security anti-patterns and 4 insecure vulnerable defaults by conducting a measurement-based approach on 28 Spring applications. Our analysis shows that security risks associated with the identified security anti-patterns and insecure defaults can leave the enterprise application vulnerable to a wide range of high-risk attacks. To prevent these high-risk attacks, we also provide recommendations for practitioners. Consequently, our study has contributed one update to the official Spring security documentation while other security issues identified in this study are being considered for future major releases by Spring security community.
Su, K.-M., Liu, I.-H., Li, J.-S..  2020.  The Risk of Industrial Control System Programmable Logic Controller Default Configurations. 2020 International Computer Symposium (ICS). :443—447.
In recent years, many devices in industrial control systems (ICS) equip Ethernet modules for more efficient communication and more fiexible deployment. Many communication protocols of those devices are based on internet protocol, which brings the above benefits but also makes it easier to access by anyone including attackers. In the case of using the factory default configurations, we wiiˆ demonstrate how to easily modify the programmable logic controllers (PLCs) program through the Integrated Development Environment provided by the manufacturer under the security protection of PLC not set properly and discuss the severity of it.
Chaudhry, Y. S., Sharma, U., Rana, A..  2020.  Enhancing Security Measures of AI Applications. 2020 8th International Conference on Reliability, Infocom Technologies and Optimization (Trends and Future Directions) (ICRITO). :713—716.

Artificial Intelligence also often referred to as machine learning is being labelled to as the future has been into light since more than a decade. Artificial Intelligence designated by the acronym AI has a vast scope of development and the developers have been working on with it constantly. AI is being associated with the existing objects in the world as well as with the ones that are about to arrive to improve them and make them more reliable. AI as it states in its name is intelligence, intelligence shown by the machines to work similar to humans and work on achieving the goals they are being provided with. Another application of AI could be to provide defenses against the present cyber threats, vehicle overrides etc. Also, AI might be intelligence but, in the end, it's still a bunch of codes, hence it is prone to be corrupted or misused by the world. To prevent the misuse of the technologies, it is necessary to deploy them with a sustainable defensive system as well. Obviously, there is going to be a default defense system but it is prone to be corrupted by the hackers or malfunctioning of the intelligence in certain scenarios which can result disastrous especially in case of Robotics. A proposal referred to as the “Guard Masking” has been offered in the following paper, to provide an alternative for securing Artificial Intelligence.

Shere, A. R. K., Nurse, J. R. C., Flechais, I..  2020.  "Security should be there by default": Investigating how journalists perceive and respond to risks from the Internet of Things. 2020 IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy Workshops (EuroS PW). :240—249.
Journalists have long been the targets of both physical and cyber-attacks from well-resourced adversaries. Internet of Things (IoT) devices are arguably a new avenue of threat towards journalists through both targeted and generalised cyber-physical exploitation. This study comprises three parts: First, we interviewed 11 journalists and surveyed 5 further journalists, to determine the extent to which journalists perceive threats through the IoT, particularly via consumer IoT devices. Second, we surveyed 34 cyber security experts to establish if and how lay-people can combat IoT threats. Third, we compared these findings to assess journalists' knowledge of threats, and whether their protective mechanisms would be effective against experts' depictions and predictions of IoT threats. Our results indicate that journalists generally are unaware of IoT-related risks and are not adequately protecting themselves; this considers cases where they possess IoT devices, or where they enter IoT-enabled environments (e.g., at work or home). Expert recommendations spanned both immediate and longterm mitigation methods, including practical actions that are technical and socio-political in nature. However, all proposed individual mitigation methods are likely to be short-term solutions, with 26 of 34 (76.5%) of cyber security experts responding that within the next five years it will not be possible for the public to opt-out of interaction with the IoT.
2021-03-09
Idhom, M., Wahanani, H. E., Fauzi, A..  2020.  Network Security System on Multiple Servers Against Brute Force Attacks. 2020 6th Information Technology International Seminar (ITIS). :258—262.

Network security is critical to be able to maintain the information, especially on servers that store a lot of information; several types of attacks can occur on servers, including brute force and DDoS attacks; in the case study in this research, there are four servers used so that a network security system that can synchronize with each other so that when one server detects an attack, another server can take precautions before the same attack occurs on another server.fail2ban is a network security tool that uses the IDPS (Intrusion Detection and Prevention System) method which is an extension of the IDS (Intrusion Detection System) combined with IP tables so that it can detect and prevent suspicious activities on a network, fail2ban automatically default can only run on one server without being able to synchronize on other servers. With a network security system that can run on multiple servers, the attack prevention process can be done faster because when one server detects an attack, another server will take precautions by retrieving the information that has entered the collector database synchronizing all servers other servers can prevent attacks before an attack occurs on that server.

2021-02-16
Dinesh, S., Burow, N., Xu, D., Payer, M..  2020.  RetroWrite: Statically Instrumenting COTS Binaries for Fuzzing and Sanitization. 2020 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (SP). :1497—1511.

Analyzing the security of closed source binaries is currently impractical for end-users, or even developers who rely on third-party libraries. Such analysis relies on automatic vulnerability discovery techniques, most notably fuzzing with sanitizers enabled. The current state of the art for applying fuzzing or sanitization to binaries is dynamic binary translation, which has prohibitive performance overhead. The alternate technique, static binary rewriting, cannot fully recover symbolization information and hence has difficulty modifying binaries to track code coverage for fuzzing or to add security checks for sanitizers.The ideal solution for binary security analysis would be a static rewriter that can intelligently add the required instrumentation as if it were inserted at compile time. Such instrumentation requires an analysis to statically disambiguate between references and scalars, a problem known to be undecidable in the general case. We show that recovering this information is possible in practice for the most common class of software and libraries: 64-bit, position independent code. Based on this observation, we develop RetroWrite, a binary-rewriting instrumentation to support American Fuzzy Lop (AFL) and Address Sanitizer (ASan), and show that it can achieve compiler-level performance while retaining precision. Binaries rewritten for coverage-guided fuzzing using RetroWrite are identical in performance to compiler-instrumented binaries and outperform the default QEMU-based instrumentation by 4.5x while triggering more bugs. Our implementation of binary-only Address Sanitizer is 3x faster than Valgrind's memcheck, the state-of-the-art binary-only memory checker, and detects 80% more bugs in our evaluation.

2020-04-13
Phan, Trung V., Islam, Syed Tasnimul, Nguyen, Tri Gia, Bauschert, Thomas.  2019.  Q-DATA: Enhanced Traffic Flow Monitoring in Software-Defined Networks applying Q-learning. 2019 15th International Conference on Network and Service Management (CNSM). :1–9.
Software-Defined Networking (SDN) introduces a centralized network control and management by separating the data plane from the control plane which facilitates traffic flow monitoring, security analysis and policy formulation. However, it is challenging to choose a proper degree of traffic flow handling granularity while proactively protecting forwarding devices from getting overloaded. In this paper, we propose a novel traffic flow matching control framework called Q-DATA that applies reinforcement learning in order to enhance the traffic flow monitoring performance in SDN based networks and prevent traffic forwarding performance degradation. We first describe and analyse an SDN-based traffic flow matching control system that applies a reinforcement learning approach based on Q-learning algorithm in order to maximize the traffic flow granularity. It also considers the forwarding performance status of the SDN switches derived from a Support Vector Machine based algorithm. Next, we outline the Q-DATA framework that incorporates the optimal traffic flow matching policy derived from the traffic flow matching control system to efficiently provide the most detailed traffic flow information that other mechanisms require. Our novel approach is realized as a REST SDN application and evaluated in an SDN environment. Through comprehensive experiments, the results show that-compared to the default behavior of common SDN controllers and to our previous DATA mechanism-the new Q-DATA framework yields a remarkable improvement in terms of traffic forwarding performance degradation protection of SDN switches while still providing the most detailed traffic flow information on demand.
O’Raw, John, Laverty, David, Morrow, D. John.  2019.  Securing the Industrial Internet of Things for Critical Infrastructure (IIoT-CI). 2019 IEEE 5th World Forum on Internet of Things (WF-IoT). :70–75.
The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is a term applied to the industrial application of M2M devices. The security of IIoT devices is a difficult problem and where the automation of critical infrastructure is intended, risks may be unacceptable. Remote attacks are a significant threat and solutions are sought which are secure by default. The problem space may be analyzed using threat modelling methods. Software Defined Networks (SDN) provide mitigation for remote attacks which exploit local area networks. Similar concepts applied to the WAN may improve availability and performance and provide granular data on link characteristics. Schemes such as the Software Defined Perimeter allow IIoT devices to communicate on the Internet, mitigating avenues of remote attack. Finally, separation of duties at the IIoT device may prevent attacks on the integrity of the device or the confidentiality and integrity of its communications. Work remains to be done on the mitigation of DDoS.
Dechand, Sergej, Naiakshina, Alena, Danilova, Anastasia, Smith, Matthew.  2019.  In Encryption We Don’t Trust: The Effect of End-to-End Encryption to the Masses on User Perception. 2019 IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy (EuroS P). :401–415.
With WhatsApp's adoption of the Signal Protocol as its default, end-to-end encryption by the masses happened almost overnight. Unlike iMessage, WhatsApp notifies users that encryption is enabled, explicitly informing users about improved privacy. This rare feature gives us an opportunity to study people's understandings and perceptions of secure messaging pre-and post-mass messenger encryption (pre/post-MME). To study changes in perceptions, we compared the results of two mental models studies: one conducted in 2015 pre-MME and one in 2017 post-MME. Our primary finding is that users do not trust encryption as currently offered. When asked about encryption in the study, most stated that they had heard of encryption, but only a few understood the implications, even on a high level. Their consensus view was that no technical solution to stop skilled attackers from getting their data exists. Even with a major development, such as WhatsApp rolling out end-to-end encryption, people still do not feel well protected by their technology. Surprisingly, despite WhatsApp's end-to-end security info messages and the high media attention, the majority of the participants were not even aware of encryption. Most participants had an almost correct threat model, but don't believe that there is a technical solution to stop knowledgeable attackers to read their messages. Using technology made them feel vulnerable.
Khurana, Madhu, Malik, Priyanka, Puneet, Shweta.  2020.  Network Security Monitoring (NSM): Can it be Effective in a World with Encrypted Traffic? 2020 International Conference on Computation, Automation and Knowledge Management (ICCAKM). :140–144.
HTTPS is gaining widespread popularity for secure transactions. Most popular sites have made default choice as HTTPS. This development of encrypted traffic has brought in new challenges in the areas of network security monitoring and analysis. This paper makes a survey through various study done in the area on novel approaches for identification and investigating HTTPS traffic and its effect on network security monitoring. This work makes a complete analysis and evaluation of HTTPS protocol-is it ensuring security or are we entering in a vicious cycle of finding weaknesses and tryingto fill the gaps in Network security Monitoring. There are couple of vacuums that exist along with encrypted data, namely firewalls, IDS becoming blind to data being exchanged, enhancing vulnerabilities by making it tough to implement security policy and probability of malicious activities hidingin the ciphered traffic. Most of the current techniques namely DPI to port based to IP address to DNS to SNI filtering is prone to be ineffective in front of HTTPS traffic. The emphasis is upon the new ways to explore the expanding HTTPS volume with security breaches to cover new challenges related to Network Security Monitoring. Data collected from couple of up to date research and their conclusion hasbeen discussed to provide a brief overview so as to provide the reader with an in-depth understanding of the research progress in thisarea.
Lange, Thomas, Kettani, Houssain.  2019.  On Security Threats of Botnets to Cyber Systems. 2019 6th International Conference on Signal Processing and Integrated Networks (SPIN). :176–183.
As the dynamics of cyber warfare continue to change, it is very important to be aware of the issues currently confronting cyberspace. One threat which continues to grow in the danger it poses to cyber security are botnets. Botnets can launch massive Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks against internet connected hosts anonymously, undertake intricate spam campaigns, launch mass financial fraud campaigns, and even manipulate public opinion via social media bots. The network topology and technology undergirding each botnet varies greatly, as do the motivations commonly behind such networks. Furthermore, as botnets have continued to evolve, many newer ones demonstrate increased levels of anonymity and sophistication, making it more difficult to effectively counter them. Increases in the production of vulnerable Internet of Things (IoT) devices has made it easier for malicious actors to quickly assemble sizable botnets. Because of this, the steps necessary to stop botnets also vary, and in some cases, it may be extremely difficult to effectively defeat a fully functional and sophisticated botnet. While in some cases, the infrastructure supporting the botnet can be targeted and remotely disabled, other cases require the physical assistance of law enforcement to shut down the botnet. In the latter case, it is often a significant challenge to cheaply end a botnet. On the other hand, there are many steps and mitigations that can be taken by end-users to prevent their own devices from becoming part of a botnet. Many of these solutions involve implementing basic cybersecurity practices like installing firewalls and changing default passwords. More sophisticated botnets may require similarly sophisticated intrusion detection systems, to detect and remove malicious infections. Much research has gone into such systems and in recent years many researchers have begun to implement machine learning techniques to defeat botnets. This paper is intended present a review on botnet evolution, trends and mitigations, and offer related examples and research to provide the reader with quick access to a broad understanding of the issues at hand.
Morishita, Shun, Hoizumi, Takuya, Ueno, Wataru, Tanabe, Rui, Gañán, Carlos, van Eeten, Michel J.G., Yoshioka, Katsunari, Matsumoto, Tsutomu.  2019.  Detect Me If You… Oh Wait. An Internet-Wide View of Self-Revealing Honeypots. 2019 IFIP/IEEE Symposium on Integrated Network and Service Management (IM). :134–143.
Open-source honeypots are a vital component in the protection of networks and the observation of trends in the threat landscape. Their open nature also enables adversaries to identify the characteristics of these honeypots in order to detect and avoid them. In this study, we investigate the prevalence of 14 open- source honeypots running more or less default configurations, making them easily detectable by attackers. We deploy 20 simple signatures and test them for false positives against servers for domains in the Alexa top 10,000, official FTP mirrors, mail servers in real operation, and real IoT devices running telnet. We find no matches, suggesting good accuracy. We then measure the Internet-wide prevalence of default open-source honeypots by matching the signatures with Censys scan data and our own scans. We discovered 19,208 honeypots across 637 Autonomous Systems that are trivially easy to identify. Concentrations are found in research networks, but also in enterprise, cloud and hosting networks. While some of these honeypots probably have no operational relevance, e.g., they are student projects, this explanation does not fit the wider population. One cluster of honeypots was confirmed to belong to a well-known security center and was in use for ongoing attack monitoring. Concentrations in an another cluster appear to be the result of government incentives. We contacted 11 honeypot operators and received response from 4 operators, suggesting the problem of lack of network hygiene. Finally, we find that some honeypots are actively abused by attackers for hosting malicious binaries. We notified the owners of the detected honeypots via their network operators and provided recommendations for customization to avoid simple signature-based detection. We also shared our results with the honeypot developers.
Ruehrup, Stefan, Krenn, Stephan.  2019.  Towards Privacy in Geographic Message Dissemination for Connected Vehicles. 2019 IEEE International Conference on Connected Vehicles and Expo (ICCVE). :1–6.
With geographic message dissemination, connected vehicles can be served with traffic information in their proximity, thereby positively impacting road safety, traffic management, or routing. Since such messages are typically relevant in a small geographic area, servers only distribute messages to affected vehicles for efficiency reasons. One main challenge is to maintain scalability of the server infrastructure when collecting location updates from vehicles and determining the relevant group of vehicles when messages are distributed to a geographic relevance area, while at the same time respecting the individual user's privacy in accordance with legal regulations. In this paper, we present a framework for geographic message dissemination following the privacy-by-design and privacy-by-default principles, without having to accept efficiency drawbacks compared to conventional server-client based approaches.
Wadsworth, Anthony, Thanoon, Mohammed I., McCurry, Charles, Sabatto, Saleh Zein.  2019.  Development of IIoT Monitoring and Control Security Scheme for Cyber Physical Systems. 2019 SoutheastCon. :1–5.
Industry 4.0 or the fourth industrial revolution encapsulates future industry development trends to achieve more intelligent manufacturing processes, including reliance on Cyber Physical Systems (CPS). The increase in online access and control given by the incorporation of CPSs introduces a new challenge securing the operations of the CPS in that they are not supported by standard security protocols. This paper describes a process used to effectively protect the operations of an IIoT system by implementing security protocols on the CPS within the IIoT. A series of predefined boundary conditions of the safety critical parameters for which a heating and cooling CPS can safely operate within were established. If the CPS is commended to operate outside of these boundaries, it will disconnect from all external communication network and default to some pre-defined safe-operation mode until the system has been evaluated locally by an administrator and released from the safe-mode. This method was tested and validated by establishing a sample IIoT and CPS testbed setup which monitor and control the temperature of a target environment. An attack was initiated to force the target environment outside of the determined safety-critical parameters. The system responded by disabling all network ports and defaulted to the safe-operation mode established previously.
Chowdhury, Nahida Sultana, Raje, Rajeev R..  2019.  SERS: A Security-Related and Evidence-Based Ranking Scheme for Mobile Apps. 2019 First IEEE International Conference on Trust, Privacy and Security in Intelligent Systems and Applications (TPS-ISA). :130–139.
In recent years, the number of smart mobile devices has rapidly increased worldwide. This explosion of continuously connected mobile devices has resulted in an exponential growth in the number of publically available mobile Apps. To facilitate the selection of mobile Apps, from various available choices, the App distribution platforms typically rank/recommend Apps based on average star ratings, the number of downloads, and associated reviews - the external aspect of an App. However, these ranking schemes typically tend to ignore critical internal aspects (e.g., security vulnerabilities) of the Apps. Such an omission of internal aspects is certainly not desirable, especially when many of the users do not possess the necessary skills to evaluate the internal aspects and choose an App based on the default ranking scheme which uses the external aspect. In this paper, we build upon our earlier efforts by focusing specifically on the security-related internal aspect of an App and its combination with the external aspect computed from the user reviews by identifying security-related comments.We use this combination to rank-order similar Apps. We evaluate our approach on publicly available Apps from the Google PlayStore and compare our ranking with prevalent ranking techniques such as the average star ratings. The experimental results indicate the effectiveness of our proposed approach.
2020-03-16
White, Ruffin, Caiazza, Gianluca, Jiang, Chenxu, Ou, Xinyue, Yang, Zhiyue, Cortesi, Agostino, Christensen, Henrik.  2019.  Network Reconnaissance and Vulnerability Excavation of Secure DDS Systems. 2019 IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy Workshops (EuroS PW). :57–66.

Data Distribution Service (DDS) is a realtime peer-to-peer protocol that serves as a scalable middleware between distributed networked systems found in many Industrial IoT domains such as automotive, medical, energy, and defense. Since the initial ratification of the standard, specifications have introduced a Security Model and Service Plugin Interface (SPI) architecture, facilitating authenticated encryption and data centric access control while preserving interoperable data exchange. However, as Secure DDS v1.1, the default plugin specifications presently exchanges digitally signed capability lists of both participants in the clear during the crypto handshake for permission attestation; thus breaching confidentiality of the context of the connection. In this work, we present an attacker model that makes use of network reconnaissance afforded by this leaked context in conjunction with formal verification and model checking to arbitrarily reason about the underlying topology and reachability of information flow, enabling targeted attacks such as selective denial of service, adversarial partitioning of the data bus, or vulnerability excavation of vendor implementations.

2019-10-30
Meng, Na, Nagy, Stefan, Yao, Danfeng, Zhuang, Wenjie, Arango-Argoty, Gustavo.  2018.  Secure Coding Practices in Java: Challenges and Vulnerabilities. 2018 IEEE/ACM 40th International Conference on Software Engineering (ICSE). :372-383.

The Java platform and its third-party libraries provide useful features to facilitate secure coding. However, misusing them can cost developers time and effort, as well as introduce security vulnerabilities in software. We conducted an empirical study on StackOverflow posts, aiming to understand developers' concerns on Java secure coding, their programming obstacles, and insecure coding practices. We observed a wide adoption of the authentication and authorization features provided by Spring Security - a third-party framework designed to secure enterprise applications. We found that programming challenges are usually related to APIs or libraries, including the complicated cross-language data handling of cryptography APIs, and the complex Java-based or XML-based approaches to configure Spring Security. In addition, we reported multiple security vulnerabilities in the suggested code of accepted answers on the StackOverflow forum. The vulnerabilities included disabling the default protection against Cross-Site Request Forgery (CSRF) attacks, breaking SSL/TLS security through bypassing certificate validation, and using insecure cryptographic hash functions. Our findings reveal the insufficiency of secure coding assistance and documentation, as well as the huge gap between security theory and coding practices.

Hong, James, Levy, Amit, Riliskis, Laurynas, Levis, Philip.  2018.  Don't Talk Unless I Say So! Securing the Internet of Things with Default-Off Networking. 2018 IEEE/ACM Third International Conference on Internet-of-Things Design and Implementation (IoTDI). :117-128.

The Internet of Things (IoT) is changing the way we interact with everyday objects. "Smart" devices will reduce energy use, keep our homes safe, and improve our health. However, as recent attacks have shown, these devices also create tremendous security vulnerabilities in our computing networks. Securing all of these devices is a daunting task. In this paper, we argue that IoT device communications should be default-off and desired network communications must be explicitly enabled. Unlike traditional networked applications or devices like a web browser or PC, IoT applications and devices serve narrowly defined purposes and do not require access to all services in the network. Our proposal, Bark, a policy language and runtime for specifying and enforcing minimal access permissions in IoT networks, exploits this fact. Bark phrases access control policies in terms of natural questions (who, what, where, when, and how) and transforms them into transparently enforceable rules for IoT application protocols. Bark can express detailed rules such as "Let the lights see the luminosity of the bedroom sensor at any time" and "Let a device at my front door, if I approve it, unlock my smart lock for 30 seconds" in a way that is presentable and explainable to users. We implement Bark for Wi-Fi/IP and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) networks and evaluate its efficacy on several example applications and attacks.

Ghose, Nirnimesh, Lazos, Loukas, Li, Ming.  2018.  Secure Device Bootstrapping Without Secrets Resistant to Signal Manipulation Attacks. 2018 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (SP). :819-835.
In this paper, we address the fundamental problem of securely bootstrapping a group of wireless devices to a hub, when none of the devices share prior associations (secrets) with the hub or between them. This scenario aligns with the secure deployment of body area networks, IoT, medical devices, industrial automation sensors, autonomous vehicles, and others. We develop VERSE, a physical-layer group message integrity verification primitive that effectively detects advanced wireless signal manipulations that can be used to launch man-in-the-middle (MitM) attacks over wireless. Without using shared secrets to establish authenticated channels, such attacks are notoriously difficult to thwart and can undermine the authentication and key establishment processes. VERSE exploits the existence of multiple devices to verify the integrity of the messages exchanged within the group. We then use VERSE to build a bootstrapping protocol, which securely introduces new devices to the network. Compared to the state-of-the-art, VERSE achieves in-band message integrity verification during secure pairing using only the RF modality without relying on out-of-band channels or extensive human involvement. It guarantees security even when the adversary is capable of fully controlling the wireless channel by annihilating and injecting wireless signals. We study the limits of such advanced wireless attacks and prove that the introduction of multiple legitimate devices can be leveraged to increase the security of the pairing process. We validate our claims via theoretical analysis and extensive experimentations on the USRP platform. We further discuss various implementation aspects such as the effect of time synchronization between devices and the effects of multipath and interference. Note that the elimination of shared secrets, default passwords, and public key infrastructures effectively addresses the related key management challenges when these are considered at scale.
Borgolte, Kevin, Hao, Shuang, Fiebig, Tobias, Vigna, Giovanni.  2018.  Enumerating Active IPv6 Hosts for Large-Scale Security Scans via DNSSEC-Signed Reverse Zones. 2018 IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (SP). :770-784.

Security research has made extensive use of exhaustive Internet-wide scans over the recent years, as they can provide significant insights into the overall state of security of the Internet, and ZMap made scanning the entire IPv4 address space practical. However, the IPv4 address space is exhausted, and a switch to IPv6, the only accepted long-term solution, is inevitable. In turn, to better understand the security of devices connected to the Internet, including in particular Internet of Things devices, it is imperative to include IPv6 addresses in security evaluations and scans. Unfortunately, it is practically infeasible to iterate through the entire IPv6 address space, as it is 2ˆ96 times larger than the IPv4 address space. Therefore, enumeration of active hosts prior to scanning is necessary. Without it, we will be unable to investigate the overall security of Internet-connected devices in the future. In this paper, we introduce a novel technique to enumerate an active part of the IPv6 address space by walking DNSSEC-signed IPv6 reverse zones. Subsequently, by scanning the enumerated addresses, we uncover significant security problems: the exposure of sensitive data, and incorrectly controlled access to hosts, such as access to routing infrastructure via administrative interfaces, all of which were accessible via IPv6. Furthermore, from our analysis of the differences between accessing dual-stack hosts via IPv6 and IPv4, we hypothesize that the root cause is that machines automatically and by default take on globally routable IPv6 addresses. This is a practice that the affected system administrators appear unaware of, as the respective services are almost always properly protected from unauthorized access via IPv4. Our findings indicate (i) that enumerating active IPv6 hosts is practical without a preferential network position contrary to common belief, (ii) that the security of active IPv6 hosts is currently still lagging behind the security state of IPv4 hosts, and (iii) that unintended IPv6 connectivity is a major security issue for unaware system administrators.

Lewis, Matt.  2018.  Using Graph Databases to Assess the Security of Thingernets Based on the Thingabilities and Thingertivity of Things. Living in the Internet of Things: Cybersecurity of the IoT - 2018. :1-9.

Security within the IoT is currently below par. Common security issues include IoT device vendors not following security best practices and/or omitting crucial security controls and features within their devices, lack of defined and mandated IoT security standards, default IoT device configurations, missing secure update mechanisms to rectify security flaws discovered in IoT devices and the overall unintended consequence of complexity - the attack surface of networks comprising IoT devices can increase exponentially with the addition of each new device. In this paper we set out an approach using graphs and graph databases to understand IoT network complexity and the impact that different devices and their profiles have on the overall security of the underlying network and its associated data.