Topological Vulnerability Analysis

  • Sushil Jajodia
  • Steven Noel
Part of the Advances in Information Security book series (ADIS, volume 46)


Traditionally, network administrators rely on labor-intensive processes for tracking network configurations and vulnerabilities. This requires a great deal of expertise, and is error prone because of the complexity of networks and associated security data. The interdependencies of network vulnerabilities make traditional point-wise vulnerability analysis inadequate. We describe a Topological Vulnerability Analysis (TVA) approach that analyzes vulnerability dependencies and shows all possible attack paths into a network. From models of the network vulnerabilities and potential attacker exploits, we compute attack graphs that convey the impact of individual and combined vulnerabilities on overall security. TVA finds potential paths of vulnerability through a network, showing exactly how attackers may penetrate a network. From this, we identify key vulnerabilities and provide strategies for protection of critical network assets.


Intrusion Detection Situational Awareness Attack Scenario Internal Server Network Attack 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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This material is based upon work supported by Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency under the contract FA8750-05-C-0212 administered by the Air Force Research Laboratory/Rome; by Air Force Research Laboratory/Rome under the contract FA8750-06-C-0246; by Federal Aviation Administration under the contract DTFAWA-08-F-GMU18; by Air Force Office of Scientific Research under grant FA9550-07-1-0527 and FA9550-08-1-0157; and by the National Science Foundation under grants CT-0716567, CT-0716323, and CT-0627493. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the sponsoring organizations.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag US 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Center for Secure Information SystemsGeorge Mason UniversityFairfaxUSA

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