VeriCount: Verifiable Resource Accounting Using Hardware and Software Isolation

  • Shruti Tople
  • Soyeon Park
  • Min Suk Kang
  • Prateek Saxena
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 10892)


In cloud computing, where clients are billed based on the consumed resources for outsourced tasks, both the cloud providers and the clients have the incentive to manipulate claims about resource usage. Both desire an accurate and verifiable resource accounting system, which is neutral and can be trusted to refute any disputes. In this work, we present VeriCount—a verifiable resource accounting system coupled with refutable billing support for Linux container-based applications. To protect VeriCount logic, we propose a novel approach called self-accounting that combines hardware-based isolation guarantees from trusted computing mechanisms and software fault isolation techniques. The self-accounting engine in VeriCount leverages security features present in trusted computing solutions, such as Intel SGX, to measure user CPU time, memory, I/O bytes and network bandwidth while simultaneously detecting resource usage inflation attacks. We claim three main results. First, VeriCount incurs an average performance overhead of 3.62% and 16.03% over non-accounting but SGX-compatible applications in hardware and simulation mode respectively. Next, it contributes only an additional 542 lines of code to the trusted computing base. Lastly, it generates highly accurate, fine-grained resource accounting, with no discernible difference to the resource measuring tool available with the OS.



We thank the anonymous reviewers of this paper for their helpful feedback. We also thank Zhenkai Liang, Shweta Shinde, and Loi Luu for useful feedback on an early version of the paper. This research was partially supported by a grant from Singapore Ministry of Education Academic Research Fund Tier 1 (R-252-000-624-133), and the National Research Foundation, Prime Ministers Office, Singapore under its National Cybersecurity R&D Program (TSUNAMi project, No. NRF2014NCR-NCR001-21) and administered by the National Cybersecurity R&D Directorate.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shruti Tople
    • 1
  • Soyeon Park
    • 2
  • Min Suk Kang
    • 1
  • Prateek Saxena
    • 1
  1. 1.National University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore
  2. 2.Georgia TechAtlantaGeorgia

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