Advertisement

Fingerprint Embedding: A Proactive Strategy of Detecting Timing Channels

  • Jing Wang
  • Peng Liu
  • Limin Liu
  • Le Guan
  • Jiwu Jing
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 8233)

Abstract

The detection of covert timing channels is notoriously a difficult work due to the high variation of network traffic. The existing detection methods, mainly based on statistical tests, cannot effectively detect a variety of covert timing channels. In this paper, we propose a proactive strategy of detecting covert timing channels. The basic idea is that a timing fingerprint is embedded into outgoing traffic of the to-be-protected host in advance. The presence of a covert timing channel is exposed, provided that the fingerprint is absent from the traffic during transmission. As a proof of concept, we design and implement a detection system, which consists of two modules for fingerprint embedding and checking, respectively. We also perform a series of experiments to validate if this system works effectively. The results show that it detects various timing channels accurately and quickly, while has less than 2.4% degradation on network performance.

Keywords

timing channel covert channel fingerprint embedding intrusion detection system 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Winpcap: The windows packet capture library, http://www.winpcap.org
  2. 2.
    Berk, V., Giani, A., Cybenko, G., Hanover, N.: Detection of covert channel encoding in network packet delays. Tech. Rep. TR2005-536, Dartmouth College, Computer Science, Hanover (2005)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Brumley, B.B., Tuveri, N.: Remote timing attacks are still practical. In: Proceedings of the 16th European Symposium on Research in Computer Security, pp. 355–371 (2011)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Brumley, D., Boneh, D.: Remote timing attacks are practical. In: Proceedings of the 12th Conference on USENIX Security Symposium (2003)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Cabuk, S.: Network covert channels: design, analysis, detection, and elimination. PhD thesis (2006)Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Cabuk, S., Brodley, C., Shields, C.: Ip covert timing channels: design and detection. In: Proceedings of the 11th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 178–187 (2004)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Crosby, S.A., Wallach, D.S., Riedi, R.H.: Opportunities and limits of remote timing attacks. ACM Transactions on Information and System Security 12(3), 17 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Felten, E.W., Schneider, M.A.: Timing attacks on web privacy. In: Proceedings of the 7th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 25–32 (2000)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gianvecchio, S., Wang, H.: Detecting covert timing channels: an entropy-based approach. In: Proceedings of the 14th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 307–316 (2007)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Gianvecchio, S., Wang, H., Wijesekera, D., Jajodia, S.: Model-based covert timing channels: Automated modeling and evasion. In: Lippmann, R., Kirda, E., Trachtenberg, A. (eds.) RAID 2008. LNCS, vol. 5230, pp. 211–230. Springer, Heidelberg (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Giles, J., Hajek, B.: An information-theoretic and game-theoretic study of timing channels. IEEE Transactions on Information Theory 48(9), 2455–2477 (2002)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Handel, T., Sandford, M.: Hiding data in the OSI network model. In: Anderson, R. (ed.) IH 1996. LNCS, vol. 1174, pp. 23–38. Springer, Heidelberg (1996)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Henry, P.: Covert channels provided hackers the opportunity and the means for the current distributed denial of service attacks. CyberGuard Corporation (2000)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Houmansadr, A., Borisov, N.: CoCo: Coding-based covert timing channels for network flows. In: Filler, T., Pevný, T., Craver, S., Ker, A. (eds.) IH 2011. LNCS, vol. 6958, pp. 314–328. Springer, Heidelberg (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Hu, W.M.: Reducing timing channels with fuzzy time. In: IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy, pp. 8–20 (1991)Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Kang, M., Moskowitz, I.: A pump for rapid, reliable, secure communication. In: Proceedings of the 1st ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 119–129 (1993)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kocher, P.C.: Timing attacks on implementations of Diffie-Hellman, RSA, DSS, and other systems. In: Koblitz, N. (ed.) CRYPTO 1996. LNCS, vol. 1109, pp. 104–113. Springer, Heidelberg (1996)Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Kothari, K., Wright, M.: Mimic: An active covert channel that evades regularity-based detection. Computer Networks (2012)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Lampson, B.: A note on the confinement problem. Communications of the ACM 16(10), 613–615 (1973)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Liu, Y., Ghosal, D., Armknecht, F., Sadeghi, A.-R., Schulz, S., Katzenbeisser, S.: Hide and seek in time — robust covert timing channels. In: Backes, M., Ning, P. (eds.) ESORICS 2009. LNCS, vol. 5789, pp. 120–135. Springer, Heidelberg (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Lucena, N.B., Pease, J., Yadollahpour, P., Chapin, S.J.: Syntax and semantics-preserving application-layer protocol steganography. In: Fridrich, J. (ed.) IH 2004. LNCS, vol. 3200, pp. 164–179. Springer, Heidelberg (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Peng, P., Ning, P., Reeves, D.: On the secrecy of timing-based active watermarking trace-back techniques. In: IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy (2006)Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Russell, R., Welte, H.: Linux netfilter hacking HOWTO (2002), www.netfilter.org/documentation/HOWTO/netfilter-hacking-HOWTO.html
  24. 24.
    Sellke, S., Wang, C., Bagchi, S., Shroff, N.: TCP/IP timing channels: Theory to implementation. In: INFOCOM 2009, pp. 2204–2212 (2009)Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Shah, G., Molina, A., Blaze, M.: Keyboards and covert channels. In: Proceedings of the 15th Conference on USENIX Security Symposium, vol. 15 (2006)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Sharif, M.I., Lee, W., Cui, W., Lanzi, A.: Secure in-VM monitoring using hardware virtualization. In: Proceedings of the 16th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 477–487 (2009)Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Song, D.X., Wagner, D., Tian, X.: Timing analysis of keystrokes and timing attacks on SSH. In: Proceedings of the 10th USENIX Security Symposium, vol. 2, p. 3 (2001)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Walls, R., Kothari, K., Wright, M.: Liquid: A detection-resistant covert timing channel based on IPD shaping. Computer Networks 55(6), 1217–1228 (2011)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    WAND Research Group: Waikato internet traffic storage, http://wand.net.nz/wits/nzix/2/
  30. 30.
    Wang, X., Chen, S., Jajodia, S.: Tracking anonymous peer-to-peer voip calls on the internet. In: Proceedings of the 12th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 81–91 (2005)Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Wang, X., Reeves, D.S.: Robust correlation of encrypted attack traffic through stepping stones by manipulation of interpacket delays. In: Proceedings of the 10th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security, pp. 20–29 (2003)Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Wu, J., Wang, Y., Ding, L., Liao, X.: Improving performance of network covert timing channel through huffman coding. Mathematical and Computer Modelling 55(1), 69–79 (2012)MathSciNetCrossRefzbMATHGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Zander, S., Armitage, G., Branch, P.: A survey of covert channels and countermeasures in computer network protocols. IEEE Communications Surveys & Tutorials 9(3), 44–57 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Zi, X., Yao, L., Pan, L., Li, J.: Implementing a passive network covert timing channel. Computers & Security 29(6), 686–696 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jing Wang
    • 1
    • 2
  • Peng Liu
    • 3
  • Limin Liu
    • 1
  • Le Guan
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jiwu Jing
    • 1
  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Information Security, Institute of Information EngineeringCASBeijingChina
  2. 2.University of Chinese Academy of SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

Personalised recommendations