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2020-11-02
Wu, Yuming, Liu, Yutao, Liu, Ruifeng, Chen, Haibo, Zang, Binyu, Guan, Haibing.  2018.  Comprehensive VM Protection Against Untrusted Hypervisor Through Retrofitted AMD Memory Encryption. 2018 IEEE International Symposium on High Performance Computer Architecture (HPCA).

The confidentiality of tenant's data is confronted with high risk when facing hardware attacks and privileged malicious software. Hardware-based memory encryption is one of the promising means to provide strong guarantees of data security. Recently AMD has proposed its new memory encryption hardware called SME and SEV, which can selectively encrypt memory regions in a fine-grained manner, e.g., by setting the C-bits in the page table entries. More importantly, SEV further supports encrypted virtual machines. This, intuitively, has provided a new opportunity to protect data confidentiality in guest VMs against an untrusted hypervisor in the cloud environment. In this paper, we first provide a security analysis on the (in)security of SEV and uncover a set of security issues of using SEV as a means to defend against an untrusted hypervisor. Based on the study, we then propose a software-based extension to the SEV feature, namely Fidelius, to address those issues while retaining performance efficiency. Fidelius separates the management of critical resources from service provisioning and revokes the permissions of accessing specific resources from the un-trusted hypervisor. By adopting a sibling-based protection mechanism with non-bypassable memory isolation, Fidelius embraces both security and efficiency, as it introduces no new layer of abstraction. Meanwhile, Fidelius reuses the SEV API to provide a full VM life-cycle protection, including two sets of para-virtualized I/O interfaces to encode the I/O data, which is not considered in the SEV hardware design. A detailed and quantitative security analysis shows its effectiveness in protecting tenant's data from a variety of attack surfaces, and the performance evaluation confirms the performance efficiency of Fidelius.

2020-08-07
Carpentier, Eleonore, Thomasset, Corentin, Briffaut, Jeremy.  2019.  Bridging The Gap: Data Exfiltration In Highly Secured Environments Using Bluetooth IoTs.

IoT devices introduce unprecedented threats into home and professional networks. As they fail to adhere to security best practices, they are broadly exploited by malicious actors to build botnets or steal sensitive information. Their adoption challenges established security standard as classic security measures are often inappropriate to secure them. This is even more problematic in sensitive environments where the presence of insecure IoTs can be exploited to bypass strict security policies. In this paper, we demonstrate an attack against a highly secured network using a Bluetooth smart bulb. This attack allows a malicious actor to take advantage of a smart bulb to exfiltrate data from an air gapped network.

2020-03-18
Shrishti, Burra, Manohar S., Maurya, Chanchal, Maity, Soumyadev.  2019.  Leakage Resilient Searchable Symmetric Encryption with Periodic Updation. {2019 3rd International Conference on Trends in Electronics and Informatics} (ICOEI).

Searchable symmetric encryption (SSE) scheme allows a data owner to perform search queries over encrypted documents using symmetric cryptography. SSE schemes are useful in cloud storage and data outsourcing. Most of the SSE schemes in existing literature have been proved to leak a substantial amount of information that can lead to an inference attack. This paper presents, a novel leakage resilient searchable symmetric encryption with periodic updation (LRSSEPU) scheme that minimizes extra information leakage, and prevents an untrusted cloud server from performing document mapping attack, query recovery attack and other inference attacks. In particular, the size of the keyword vector is fixed and the keywords are periodically permuted and updated to achieve minimum leakage. Furthermore, our proposed LRSSEPU scheme provides authentication of the query messages and restricts an adversary from performing a replay attack, forged query attack and denial of service attack. We employ a combination of identity-based cryptography (IBC) with symmetric key cryptography to reduce the computation cost and communication overhead. Our scheme is lightweight and easy to implement with very little communication overhead.

Karmakar, Kallol Krishna, Varadharajan, Vijay, Nepal, Surya, Tupakula, Uday.  2019.  SDN Enabled Secure IoT Architecture. {2019 IFIP/IEEE} Symposium on Integrated Network and Service Management (IM).

The Internet of Things (IoT) is increasingly being used in applications ranging from precision agriculture to critical national infrastructure by deploying a large number of resource-constrained devices in hostile environments. These devices are being exploited to launch attacks in cyber systems. As a result, security has become a significant concern in the design of IoT based applications. In this paper, we present a security architecture for IoT networks by leveraging the underlying features supported by Software Defined Networks (SDN). Our security architecture restricts network access to authenticated IoT devices. We use fine granular policies to secure the flows in the IoT network infrastructure and provide a lightweight protocol to authenticate IoT devices. Such an integrated security approach involving authentication of IoT devices and enabling authorized flows can help to protect IoT networks from malicious IoT devices and attacks.

Van, Hao, Nguyen, Huyen N., Hewett, Rattikorn, Dang, Tommy.  2019.  HackerNets: Visualizing Media Conversations on Internet of Things, Big Data, and Cybersecurity. 2019 IEEE International Conference on Big Data (Big Data). :3293–3302.
The giant network of Internet of Things establishes connections between smart devices and people, with protocols to collect and share data. While the data is expanding at a fast pace in this era of Big Data, there are growing concerns about security and privacy policies. In the current Internet of Things ecosystems, at the intersection of the Internet of Things, Big Data, and Cybersecurity lies the subject that attracts the most attention. In aiding users in getting an adequate understanding, this paper introduces HackerNets, an interactive visualization for emerging topics in the crossing of IoT, Big Data, and Cybersecurity over time. To demonstrate the effectiveness and usefulness of HackerNets, we apply and evaluate the technique on the dataset from the social media platform.
Yang, Yunxue, Ji, Guohua, Yang, Zhenqi, Xue, Shengjun.  2019.  Incentive Contract for Cybersecurity Information Sharing Considering Monitoring Signals. 2019 International Conference on Internet of Things (iThings) and IEEE Green Computing and Communications (GreenCom) and IEEE Cyber, Physical and Social Computing (CPSCom) and IEEE Smart Data (SmartData). :507–512.
Cyber insurance is a viable method for cyber risk transfer. However, the cyber insurance faces critical challenges, the most important of which is lack of statistical data. In this paper, we proposed an incentive model considering monitoring signals for cybersecurity information haring based on the principal-agent theory. We studied the effect of monitoring signals on increasing the rationality of the incentive contract and reducing moral hazard in the process of cybersecurity information sharing, and analyzed factors influencing the effectiveness of the incentive contract. We show that by introducing monitoring signals, the insurer can collect more information about the effort level of the insured, and encourage the insured to share cybersecurity information based on the information sharing output and monitoring signals of the effort level, which can not only reduce the blindness of incentive to the insured in the process of cybersecurity information sharing, but also reduce moral hazard.
Li, Tao, Guo, Yuanbo, Ju, Ankang.  2019.  A Self-Attention-Based Approach for Named Entity Recognition in Cybersecurity. 2019 15th International Conference on Computational Intelligence and Security (CIS). :147–150.
With cybersecurity situation more and more complex, data-driven security has become indispensable. Numerous cybersecurity data exists in textual sources and data analysis is difficult for both security analyst and the machine. To convert the textual information into structured data for further automatic analysis, we extract cybersecurity-related entities and propose a self-attention-based neural network model for the named entity recognition in cybersecurity. Considering the single word feature not enough for identifying the entity, we introduce CNN to extract character feature which is then concatenated into the word feature. Then we add the self-attention mechanism based on the existing BiLSTM-CRF model. Finally, we evaluate the proposed model on the labelled dataset and obtain a better performance than the previous entity extraction model.
Offenberger, Spencer, Herman, Geoffrey L., Peterson, Peter, Sherman, Alan T, Golaszewski, Enis, Scheponik, Travis, Oliva, Linda.  2019.  Initial Validation of the Cybersecurity Concept Inventory: Pilot Testing and Expert Review. 2019 IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference (FIE). :1–9.
We analyze expert review and student performance data to evaluate the validity of the Cybersecurity Concept Inventory (CCI) for assessing student knowledge of core cybersecurity concepts after a first course on the topic. A panel of 12 experts in cybersecurity reviewed the CCI, and 142 students from six different institutions took the CCI as a pilot test. The panel reviewed each item of the CCI and the overwhelming majority rated every item as measuring appropriate cybersecurity knowledge. We administered the CCI to students taking a first cybersecurity course either online or proctored by the course instructor. We applied classical test theory to evaluate the quality of the CCI. This evaluation showed that the CCI is sufficiently reliable for measuring student knowledge of cybersecurity and that the CCI may be too difficult as a whole. We describe the results of the expert review and the pilot test and provide recommendations for the continued improvement of the CCI.
Wang, Johnson J. H..  2019.  Solving Cybersecurity Problem by Symmetric Dual-Space Formulation—Physical and Cybernetic. 2019 IEEE International Symposium on Antennas and Propagation and USNC-URSI Radio Science Meeting. :601–602.
To address cybersecurity, this author proposed recently the approach of formulating it in symmetric dual-space and dual-system. This paper further explains this concept, beginning with symmetric Maxwell Equation (ME) and Fourier Transform (FT). The approach appears to be a powerful solution, with wide applications ranging from Electronic Warfare (EW) to 5G Mobile, etc.
Schwab, Stephen, Kline, Erik.  2019.  Cybersecurity Experimentation at Program Scale: Guidelines and Principles for Future Testbeds. 2019 IEEE European Symposium on Security and Privacy Workshops (EuroS PW). :94–102.
Cybersecurity Experimentation is often viewed narrowly in terms of a single technology or experiment. This paper reviews the experimentation life-cycle for two large scale research efforts that span multiple technologies. We identify salient aspects of each cybersecurity program, and capture guidelines based on eight years of experience. Extrapolating, we identify four principles for building future experimental infrastructure: 1) Reduce the cognitive burden on experimenters when designing and operating experiments. 2) Allow experimenters to encode their goals and constraints. 3) Provide flexibility in experimental design. 4) Provide multifaceted guidance to help experimenters produce high-quality experiments. By following these principles, future cybersecurity testbeds can enable significantly higher-quality experiments.
Kalashnikov, A.O., Anikina, E.V..  2019.  Complex Network Cybersecurity Monitoring Method. 2019 Twelfth International Conference "Management of large-scale system development" (MLSD). :1–3.
This paper considers one of the methods of efficient allocation of limited resources in special-purpose devices (sensors) to monitor complex network unit cybersecurity.
Zhang, Ruipeng, Xu, Chen, Xie, Mengjun.  2019.  Powering Hands-on Cybersecurity Practices with Cloud Computing. 2019 IEEE 27th International Conference on Network Protocols (ICNP). :1–2.
Cybersecurity education and training have gained increasing attention in all sectors due to the prevalence and quick evolution of cyberattacks. A variety of platforms and systems have been proposed and developed to accommodate the growing needs of hands-on cybersecurity practice. However, those systems are either lacking sufficient flexibility (e.g., tied to a specific virtual computing service provider, little customization support) or difficult to scale. In this work, we present a cloud-based platform named EZSetup for hands-on cybersecurity practice at scale and our experience of using it in class. EZSetup is customizable and cloud-agnostic. Users can create labs through an intuitive Web interface and deploy them onto one or multiple clouds. We have used NSF funded Chameleon cloud and our private OpenStack cloud to develop, test and deploy EZSetup. We have developed 14 network and security labs using the tool and included six labs in an undergraduate network security course in spring 2019. Our survey results show that students have very positive feedback on using EZSetup and computing clouds for hands-on cybersecurity practice.
Promyslov, Vitaly, Jharko, Elena, Semenkov, Kirill.  2019.  Principles of Physical and Information Model Integration for Cybersecurity Provision to a Nuclear Power Plant. 2019 Twelfth International Conference "Management of large-scale system development" (MLSD). :1–3.
For complex technical objects the research of cybersecurity problems should take into account both physical and information properties of the object. The paper considers a hybrid model that unifies information and physical models and may be used as a tool for countering cyber threats and for cybersecurity risk assessment at the design and operational stage of an object's lifecycle.
Williams, Laurie.  2019.  Science Leaves Clues. IEEE Security Privacy. 17:4–6.
The elusive science of security. Science advances when research results build upon prior findings through the evolution of hypotheses and theories about the fundamental relationships among variables within a context and considering the threats and limitations of the work. Some hypothesize that, through this science of security, the industry can take a more principled and systematic approach to securing systems, rather than reacting to the latest move by attackers. Others debate the utility of a science of security.
2020-03-09
Spring, Jonathan M., Moore, Tyler, Pym, David.  2017.  Practicing a Science of Security: A Philosophy of Science Perspective. Proceedings of the 2017 New Security Paradigms Workshop. :1–18.

Our goal is to refocus the question about cybersecurity research from 'is this process scientific' to 'why is this scientific process producing unsatisfactory results'. We focus on five common complaints that claim cybersecurity is not or cannot be scientific. Many of these complaints presume views associated with the philosophical school known as Logical Empiricism that more recent scholarship has largely modified or rejected. Modern philosophy of science, supported by mathematical modeling methods, provides constructive resources to mitigate all purported challenges to a science of security. Therefore, we argue the community currently practices a science of cybersecurity. A philosophy of science perspective suggests the following form of practice: structured observation to seek intelligible explanations of phenomena, evaluating explanations in many ways, with specialized fields (including engineering and forensics) constraining explanations within their own expertise, inter-translating where necessary. A natural question to pursue in future work is how collecting, evaluating, and analyzing evidence for such explanations is different in security than other sciences.

2020-01-27
Cesar, Pablo, Zwitser, Robert, Webb, Andrew, Ashby, Liam, Ali, Abdallah.  2019.  Uncovering Perceived Identification Accuracy of In-Vehicle Biometric Sensing | Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Automotive User Interfaces and Interactive Vehicular Applications: Adjunct Proceedings. AutomotiveUI '19: Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Automotive User Interfaces and Interactive Vehicular Applications: Adjunct Proceedings.

Biometric techniques can help make vehicles safer to drive, authenticate users, and provide personalized in-car experiences. However, it is unclear to what extent users are willing to trade their personal biometric data for such benefits. In this early work, we conducted an open card sorting study (N=11) to better understand how well users perceive their physical, behavioral and physiological features can personally identify them. Findings showed that on average participants clustered features into six groups, and helped us revise ambiguous cards and better understand users' clustering. These findings provide the basis for a follow up online closed card sorting study to more fully understand perceived identification accuracy of (in-vehicle) biometric sensing. By uncovering this at a larger scale, we can then further study the privacy and user experience trade-off in (automated) vehicles.

2019-10-30
Jansen, Rob, Traudt, Matthew, Hopper, Nicholas.  2018.  Privacy-Preserving Dynamic Learning of Tor Network Traffic. Proceedings of the 2018 ACM SIGSAC Conference on Computer and Communications Security. :1944-1961.

Experimentation tools facilitate exploration of Tor performance and security research problems and allow researchers to safely and privately conduct Tor experiments without risking harm to real Tor users. However, researchers using these tools configure them to generate network traffic based on simplifying assumptions and outdated measurements and without understanding the efficacy of their configuration choices. In this work, we design a novel technique for dynamically learning Tor network traffic models using hidden Markov modeling and privacy-preserving measurement techniques. We conduct a safe but detailed measurement study of Tor using 17 relays (\textasciitilde2% of Tor bandwidth) over the course of 6 months, measuring general statistics and models that can be used to generate a sequence of streams and packets. We show how our measurement results and traffic models can be used to generate traffic flows in private Tor networks and how our models are more realistic than standard and alternative network traffic generation\textasciitildemethods.

Demoulin, Henri Maxime, Vaidya, Tavish, Pedisich, Isaac, DiMaiolo, Bob, Qian, Jingyu, Shah, Chirag, Zhang, Yuankai, Chen, Ang, Haeberlen, Andreas, Loo, Boon Thau et al..  2018.  DeDoS: Defusing DoS with Dispersion Oriented Software. Proceedings of the 34th Annual Computer Security Applications Conference. :712-722.

This paper presents DeDoS, a novel platform for mitigating asymmetric DoS attacks. These attacks are particularly challenging since even attackers with limited resources can exhaust the resources of well-provisioned servers. DeDoS offers a framework to deploy code in a highly modular fashion. If part of the application stack is experiencing a DoS attack, DeDoS can massively replicate only the affected component, potentially across many machines. This allows scaling of the impacted resource separately from the rest of the application stack, so that resources can be precisely added where needed to combat the attack. Our evaluation results show that DeDoS incurs reasonable overheads in normal operations, and that it significantly outperforms standard replication techniques when defending against a range of asymmetric attacks.

Dean, Andrew, Agyeman, Michael Opoku.  2018.  A Study of the Advances in IoT Security. Proceedings of the 2Nd International Symposium on Computer Science and Intelligent Control. :15:1-15:5.

The Internet-of-things (IoT) holds a lot of benefits to our lives by removing menial tasks and improving efficiency of everyday objects. You are trusting your personal data and device control to the manufactures and you may not be aware of how much risk your putting your privacy at by sending your data over the internet. The internet-of-things may not be as secure as you think when the devices used are constrained by a lot of variables which attackers can exploit to gain access to your data / device and anything they connected to and as the internet-of-things is all about connecting devices together one weak point can be all it takes to gain full access. In this paper we have a look at the current advances in IoT security and the most efficient methods to protect IoT devices.

Belkin, Maxim, Haas, Roland, Arnold, Galen Wesley, Leong, Hon Wai, Huerta, Eliu A., Lesny, David, Neubauer, Mark.  2018.  Container Solutions for HPC Systems: A Case Study of Using Shifter on Blue Waters. Proceedings of the Practice and Experience on Advanced Research Computing. :43:1-43:8.

Software container solutions have revolutionized application development approaches by enabling lightweight platform abstractions within the so-called "containers." Several solutions are being actively developed in attempts to bring the benefits of containers to high-performance computing systems with their stringent security demands on the one hand and fundamental resource sharing requirements on the other. In this paper, we discuss the benefits and short-comings of such solutions when deployed on real HPC systems and applied to production scientific applications. We highlight use cases that are either enabled by or significantly benefit from such solutions. We discuss the efforts by HPC system administrators and support staff to support users of these type of workloads on HPC systems not initially designed with these workloads in mind focusing on NCSA's Blue Waters system.

Madani, Pooria, Vlajic, Natalija.  2018.  Robustness of Deep Autoencoder in Intrusion Detection Under Adversarial Contamination. Proceedings of the 5th Annual Symposium and Bootcamp on Hot Topics in the Science of Security. :1:1-1:8.

The existing state-of-the-art in the field of intrusion detection systems (IDSs) generally involves some use of machine learning algorithms. However, the computer security community is growing increasingly aware that a sophisticated adversary could target the learning module of these IDSs in order to circumvent future detections. Consequently, going forward, robustness of machine-learning based IDSs against adversarial manipulation (i.e., poisoning) will be the key factor for the overall success of these systems in the real world. In our work, we focus on adaptive IDSs that use anomaly-based detection to identify malicious activities in an information system. To be able to evaluate the susceptibility of these IDSs to deliberate adversarial poisoning, we have developed a novel framework for their performance testing under adversarial contamination. We have also studied the viability of using deep autoencoders in the detection of anomalies in adaptive IDSs, as well as their overall robustness against adversarial poisoning. Our experimental results show that our proposed autoencoder-based IDS outperforms a generic PCA-based counterpart by more than 15% in terms of detection accuracy. The obtained results concerning the detection ability of the deep autoencoder IDS under adversarial contamination, compared to that of the PCA-based IDS, are also encouraging, with the deep autoencoder IDS maintaining a more stable detection in parallel to limiting the contamination of its training dataset to just bellow 2%.

Bugeja, Joseph, Vogel, Bahtijar, Jacobsson, Andreas, Varshney, Rimpu.  2019.  IoTSM: An End-to-End Security Model for IoT Ecosystems. 2019 IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communications Workshops (PerCom Workshops). :267-272.

The Internet of Things (IoT) market is growing rapidly, allowing continuous evolution of new technologies. Alongside this development, most IoT devices are easy to compromise, as security is often not a prioritized characteristic. This paper proposes a novel IoT Security Model (IoTSM) that can be used by organizations to formulate and implement a strategy for developing end-to-end IoT security. IoTSM is grounded by the Software Assurance Maturity Model (SAMM) framework, however it expands it with new security practices and empirical data gathered from IoT practitioners. Moreover, we generalize the model into a conceptual framework. This approach allows the formal analysis for security in general and evaluates an organization's security practices. Overall, our proposed approach can help researchers, practitioners, and IoT organizations, to discourse about IoT security from an end-to-end perspective.

Jenkins, Ira Ray, Bratus, Sergey, Smith, Sean, Koo, Maxwell.  2018.  Reinventing the Privilege Drop: How Principled Preservation of Programmer Intent Would Prevent Security Bugs. Proceedings of the 5th Annual Symposium and Bootcamp on Hot Topics in the Science of Security. :3:1-3:9.

The principle of least privilege requires that components of a program have access to only those resources necessary for their proper function. Defining proper function is a difficult task. Existing methods of privilege separation, like Control Flow Integrity and Software Fault Isolation, attempt to infer proper function by bridging the gaps between language abstractions and hardware capabilities. However, it is programmer intent that defines proper function, as the programmer writes the code that becomes law. Codifying programmer intent into policy is a promising way to capture proper function; however, often onerous policy creation can unnecessarily delay development and adoption. In this paper, we demonstrate the use of our ELF-based access control (ELFbac), a novel technique for policy definition and enforcement. ELFbac leverages the common programmer's existing mental model of scope, and allows for policy definition at the Application Binary Interface (ABI) level. We consider the roaming vulnerability found in OpenSSH, and demonstrate how using ELFbac would have provided strong mitigation with minimal program modification. This serves to illustrate the effectiveness of ELFbac as a means of privilege separation in further applications, and the intuitive, yet robust nature of our general approach to policy creation.

Redmiles, Elissa M., Zhu, Ziyun, Kross, Sean, Kuchhal, Dhruv, Dumitras, Tudor, Mazurek, Michelle L..  2018.  Asking for a Friend: Evaluating Response Biases in Security User Studies. Proceedings of the 2018 ACM SIGSAC Conference on Computer and Communications Security. :1238-1255.

The security field relies on user studies, often including survey questions, to query end users' general security behavior and experiences, or hypothetical responses to new messages or tools. Self-report data has many benefits – ease of collection, control, and depth of understanding – but also many well-known biases stemming from people's difficulty remembering prior events or predicting how they might behave, as well as their tendency to shape their answers to a perceived audience. Prior work in fields like public health has focused on measuring these biases and developing effective mitigations; however, there is limited evidence as to whether and how these biases and mitigations apply specifically in a computer-security context. In this work, we systematically compare real-world measurement data to survey results, focusing on an exemplar, well-studied security behavior: software updating. We align field measurements about specific software updates (n=517,932) with survey results in which participants respond to the update messages that were used when those versions were released (n=2,092). This allows us to examine differences in self-reported and observed update speeds, as well as examining self-reported responses to particular message features that may correlate with these results. The results indicate that for the most part, self-reported data varies consistently and systematically with measured data. However, this systematic relationship breaks down when survey respondents are required to notice and act on minor details of experimental manipulations. Our results suggest that many insights from self-report security data can, when used with care, translate to real-world environments; however, insights about specific variations in message texts or other details may be more difficult to assess with surveys.

2019-05-01
Chen, Huashan, Cho, Jin-Hee, Xu, Shouhuai.  2018.  Quantifying the Security Effectiveness of Firewalls and DMZs. Proceedings of the 5th Annual Symposium and Bootcamp on Hot Topics in the Science of Security. :9:1–9:11.

Firewalls and Demilitarized Zones (DMZs) are two mechanisms that have been widely employed to secure enterprise networks. Despite this, their security effectiveness has not been systematically quantified. In this paper, we make a first step towards filling this void by presenting a representational framework for investigating their security effectiveness in protecting enterprise networks. Through simulation experiments, we draw useful insights into the security effectiveness of firewalls and DMZs. To the best of our knowledge, these insights were not reported in the literature until now.