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Publications (10 of 110) Show all publications
Afzal, Z., Garcia, J., Lindskog, S. & Brunström, A. (2019). Using Partial Signatures in Intrusion Detection for Multipath TCP. In: Aslan Askarov, René Rydhof Hansen, Willard Rafnsson (Ed.), Secure IT-systems: 24th Nordic Conference, NordSec 2019, Aalborg, Denmark, November 18–20, 2019, Proceedings. Paper presented at NordSec2019: 24th Nordic Conference on Secure IT Systems, 18-20 November, 2019, Aalborg, Denmark, (pp. 71-86). Cham, Switzerland: Springer
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Using Partial Signatures in Intrusion Detection for Multipath TCP
2019 (English)In: Secure IT-systems: 24th Nordic Conference, NordSec 2019, Aalborg, Denmark, November 18–20, 2019, Proceedings / [ed] Aslan Askarov, René Rydhof Hansen, Willard Rafnsson, Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2019, p. 71-86Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Traditional security mechanisms such as signature basedintrusion detection systems (IDSs) attempt to find a perfect match of aset of signatures in network traffic. Such IDSs depend on the availabilityof a complete application data stream. With emerging protocols such asMultipath TCP (MPTCP), this precondition cannot be ensured, result-ing in false negatives and IDS evasion. On the other hand, if approximatesignature matching is used instead in an IDS, a potentially high numberof false positives make the detection impractical. In this paper, we showthat, by using a specially tailored partial signature matcher and knowl-edge about MPTCP semantics, the Snort3 IDS can be empowered withpartial signature detection. Additionally, we uncover the type of Snort3rules suitable for the task of partial matching. Experimental results withthese rules show a low false positive rate for benign traffic and highdetection coverage for attack traffic.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Cham, Switzerland: Springer, 2019
Series
Lecture Notes in Computer Science, ISSN 0302-9743 ; 11875
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Research subject
Computer Science; Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-75755 (URN)10.1007/978-3-030-35055-0_5 (DOI)
Conference
NordSec2019: 24th Nordic Conference on Secure IT Systems, 18-20 November, 2019, Aalborg, Denmark,
Available from: 2019-11-14 Created: 2019-11-14 Last updated: 2020-01-14Bibliographically approved
Afzal, Z., Garcia, J., Lindskog, S. & Brunström, A. (2018). Slice Distance: An Insert-Only Levenshtein Distance with a Focus on Security Applications. In: Proceedings of NTMS 2018 Conference and Workshop: . Paper presented at 9th IFIP International Conference on New Technologies, Mobility and Security, 26-28 February 2018, Paris, France (pp. 1-5). New York: IEEE
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Slice Distance: An Insert-Only Levenshtein Distance with a Focus on Security Applications
2018 (English)In: Proceedings of NTMS 2018 Conference and Workshop, New York: IEEE, 2018, p. 1-5Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Levenshtein distance is well known for its use in comparing two strings for similarity. However, the set of considered edit operations used when comparing can be reduced in a number of situations. In such cases, the application of the generic Levenshtein distance can result in degraded detection and computational performance. Other metrics in the literature enable limiting the considered edit operations to a smaller subset. However, the possibility where a difference can only result from deleted bytes is not yet explored. To this end, we propose an insert-only variation of the Levenshtein distance to enable comparison of two strings for the case in which differences occur only because of missing bytes. The proposed distance metric is named slice distance and is formally presented and its computational complexity is discussed. We also provide a discussion of the potential security applications of the slice distance.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York: IEEE, 2018
Keywords
Measurement, Pattern matching, Time complexity, Transforms, Security, DNA
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-67012 (URN)10.1109/NTMS.2018.8328718 (DOI)000448864200049 ()978-1-5386-3662-6 (ISBN)978-1-5386-3663-3 (ISBN)
Conference
9th IFIP International Conference on New Technologies, Mobility and Security, 26-28 February 2018, Paris, France
Projects
HITS, 4707
Funder
Knowledge Foundation, 4707
Available from: 2018-04-17 Created: 2018-04-17 Last updated: 2020-01-14Bibliographically approved
Voronkov, A., Iwaya, L. H., Martucci, L. & Lindskog, S. (2018). Systematic Literature Review on Usability of Firewall Configuration. ACM Computing Surveys, 50(6), Article ID 87.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Systematic Literature Review on Usability of Firewall Configuration
2018 (English)In: ACM Computing Surveys, ISSN 0360-0300, E-ISSN 1557-7341, Vol. 50, no 6, article id 87Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Firewalls are network security components that handle incoming and outgoing network traffic based on a set of rules. The process of correctly configuring a firewall is complicated and prone to error, and it worsens as the network complexity grows. A poorly configured firewall may result in major security threats; in the case of a network firewall, an organization’s security could be endangered, and in the case of a personal firewall, an individual computer’s security is threatened. A major reason for poorly configured firewalls, as pointed out in the literature, is usability issues. Our aim is to identify existing solutions that help professional and non-professional users to create and manage firewall configuration files, and to analyze the proposals in respect of usability. A systematic literature review with a focus on the usability of firewall configuration is presented in the article. Its main goal is to explore what has already been done in this field. In the primary selection procedure, 1,202 articles were retrieved and then screened. The secondary selection led us to 35 articles carefully chosen for further investigation, of which 14 articles were selected and summarized. As main contributions, we propose a taxonomy of existing solutions as well as a synthesis and in-depth discussion about the state of the art in firewall usability. Among the main findings, we perceived that there is a lack (or even an absence) of usability evaluation or user studies to validate the proposed models. Although all articles are related to the topic of usability, none of them clearly defines it, and only a few actually employ usability design principles and/or guidelines.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York, NY, USA: Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 2018
Keywords
usability, Firewall, systematic literature review, visualization
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65622 (URN)10.1145/3130876 (DOI)000419881700010 ()
Projects
HITS, High Quality Networked Services in a Mobile World (4707)
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2018-01-18 Created: 2018-01-18 Last updated: 2019-11-09Bibliographically approved
Momen, N., Pulls, T., Fritsch, L. & Lindskog, S. (2017). How much Privilege does an App Need? Investigating Resource Usage of Android Apps. In: Proceedings of the Fifteenth International Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust – PST 2017 (IEEE proceedings pendings): . Paper presented at The Fifteenth International Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust – PST 2017. August 28-30, 2017 Calgary, Alberta, Canada. IEEE
Open this publication in new window or tab >>How much Privilege does an App Need? Investigating Resource Usage of Android Apps
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of the Fifteenth International Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust – PST 2017 (IEEE proceedings pendings), IEEE, 2017Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Arguably, one of the default solutions to many of today’s everyday errands is to install an app. In order to deliver a variety of convenient and user-centric services, apps need to access different types of information stored in mobile devices, much of which is personal information. In principle, access to such privacy sensitive data should be kept to a minimum. In this study, we focus on privilege utilization patterns by apps installed on Android devices. Though explicit consent is required prior to first time access to the resource, the unavailability of usage information makes it unclear when trying to reassess the users initial decision. On the other hand, if granted privilege with little or no usage, it would suggest the likely violation of the principle of least privilege. Our findings illustrate a plausible requirement for visualising resource usage to aid the user in their decision- making and finer access control mechanisms. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE, 2017
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-65605 (URN)10.1109/PST.2017.00039 (DOI)000447643500028 ()978-1-5386-2487-6 (ISBN)978-1-5386-2488-3 (ISBN)
Conference
The Fifteenth International Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust – PST 2017. August 28-30, 2017 Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Available from: 2018-01-15 Created: 2018-01-15 Last updated: 2019-07-11Bibliographically approved
Iwaya, L. H., Voronkov, A., Martucci, L. A., Lindskog, S. & Fischer-Hübner, S. (2016). Firewall Usability and Visualization: A Systematic Literature Review.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Firewall Usability and Visualization: A Systematic Literature Review
Show others...
2016 (English)Report (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Firewalls are network security components that allow administrators to handle incoming and outgoing traffic based on a set of rules. Such security appliances are typically the first line of defense, creating a barrier between organization’s internal network and the outside network (e.g., Internet). The process of correctly configuring a firewall is complex and error prone, and it only gets worse as the complexity of the network grows. A vulnerable firewall configuration will very likely result in major threats to the organization’s security. In this report we aim to investigate how to make administrator task of planning and implementing firewall solutions easier, from the stand points of usability and visualization. Our scientific investigation starts with the understanding of the state-of-the-art on this specific field. To do so, we conducted a Systematic Literature Review (SLR), a strict methodology to plan a literature review, to gather relevant information, to synthesize and compare approaches, and to report findings. During the initial search process thousands of papers were screened, leading us to 125 papers carefully selected for further readings. In the secondary study, ten relevant works were identified and assessed, in which authors tackled the issues of usability and visualization for Firewalls and Personal Firewalls. Among the main findings, we perceive that there is a lack (or even absence) of user studies to validate the proposed models. This leads us to a series of unwarranted solutions, that need to be prototyped and tested with real users. We also see an huge opportunity for integrative approaches, that could combine firewall research areas, such as automatic anomaly detection, advisory systems, and varying visualization schemes.

Publisher
p. 63
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 37
Keywords
firewall, usability, visualization, systematic literature review
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-44688 (URN)978-91-7063-718-6 (ISBN)
Projects
High Quality Networked Services in a Mobile World (HITS)
Funder
Knowledge Foundation, 4707
Available from: 2016-08-26 Created: 2016-08-12 Last updated: 2018-06-04Bibliographically approved
Afzal, Z. & Lindskog, S. (2016). IDS rule management made easy. In: Electronics, Computers and Artificial Intelligence (ECAI), 2016 8th International Conference on: . Paper presented at 8th International Conference on Electronics, Computers and Artificial Intelligence (ECAI), 30 June-2 July 2016, Ploiesti, Romania. IEEE
Open this publication in new window or tab >>IDS rule management made easy
2016 (English)In: Electronics, Computers and Artificial Intelligence (ECAI), 2016 8th International Conference on, IEEE, 2016Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Signature-based intrusion detection systems (IDSs) are commonly utilized in enterprise networks to detect and possibly block a wide variety of attacks. Their application in industrial control systems (ICSs) is also growing rapidly as modem ICSs increasingly use open standard protocols instead of proprietary. Due to an ever changing threat landscape, the rulesets used by these IDSs have grown large and there is no way to verify their precision or accuracy. Such broad and non-optimized rulesets lead to false positives and an unnecessary burden on the IDS, resulting in possible degradation of the security. This work proposes a methodology consisting of a set of tools to help optimize the IDS rulesets and make rule management easier. The work also provides attack traffic data that is expected to benefit the task of IDS assessment.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE, 2016
Series
International Conference on Electronics Computers and Artificial Intelligence, ISSN 2378-7147
National Category
Computer Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-48016 (URN)10.1109/ECAI.2016.7861119 (DOI)000402541200055 ()978-1-5090-2048-5 (ISBN)978-1-5090-2047-8 (ISBN)
Conference
8th International Conference on Electronics, Computers and Artificial Intelligence (ECAI), 30 June-2 July 2016, Ploiesti, Romania
Projects
HITS, 4707
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2017-02-24 Created: 2017-02-24 Last updated: 2020-01-14Bibliographically approved
Dahlberg, R. & Pulls, T. (2016). Standardized Syslog Processing: Revisiting Secure Reliable Data Transfer and Message Compression. Karlstad: Karlstads universitet
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Standardized Syslog Processing: Revisiting Secure Reliable Data Transfer and Message Compression
2016 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Today's computer logs are like smoking guns and treasure maps in case of suspicious system activities: they document intrusions, and log crucial information such as failed system updates and crashed services. An adversary thus has a clear motive to observe, alter, and delete log entries, considering that she could (i) start by using the log's content to identify new security vulnerabilities, and (ii) exploit them without ever being detected. With this in mind we consider syslog standards and open source projects that safeguard events during the storage and transit phases, and examine how data compression effects security. We conclude that there are syslog standards in place that satisfy security on a hop-by-hop basis, that there are no such standards for secure storage, and that message compression is not recommended during transit.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2016
Series
Arbetsrapport
Keywords
Syslog, rsyslog, syslog-ng, standardized logging, secure data compression
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-45392 (URN)978-91-7063-719-3 (ISBN)
Projects
HITS
Available from: 2016-09-19 Created: 2016-08-19 Last updated: 2019-11-11
Afzal, Z., Lindskog, S., Brunström, A. & Lidén, A. (2016). Towards Multipath TCP Aware Security Technologies. In: 2016 8th IFIP International Conference onNew Technologies, Mobility and Security (NTMS): . Paper presented at 8th IFIP International Conference on New Technologies, Mobility and Security (NTMS), Larnaca, Cyprus 21-23 November 2016 (pp. 1-8). New York: IEEE
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Towards Multipath TCP Aware Security Technologies
2016 (English)In: 2016 8th IFIP International Conference onNew Technologies, Mobility and Security (NTMS), New York: IEEE, 2016, p. 1-8Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Multipath TCP (MPTCP) is a proposed extension to TCP that enables a number of performance advantages that have not been offered before. While the protocol specification is close to being finalized, there still remain some unaddressed challenges regarding the deployment and security implications of the protocol. This work attempts to tackle some of these concerns by proposing and implementing MPTCP aware security services and deploying them inside a proof of concept MPTCP proxy. The aim is to enable hosts, even those without native MPTCP support, to securely benefit from the MPTCP performance advantages. Our evaluations show that the security services that are implemented enable proper intrusion detection and prevention to thwart potential attacks as well as threshold rules to prevent denial of service (DoS) attacks.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
New York: IEEE, 2016
National Category
Computer Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-47594 (URN)10.1109/NTMS.2016.7792485 (DOI)000391578700063 ()978-1-5090-2914-3 (ISBN)
Conference
8th IFIP International Conference on New Technologies, Mobility and Security (NTMS), Larnaca, Cyprus 21-23 November 2016
Projects
HITS, 4707
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2017-01-06 Created: 2017-01-06 Last updated: 2020-01-14Bibliographically approved
Afzal, Z., Lindskog, S. & Lidén, A. (2015). A Multipath TCP Proxy. In: : . Paper presented at The 11th Swedish National Computer Networking Workshop (SNCNW), Karlstad, Sweden, May 28–29, 2015.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A Multipath TCP Proxy
2015 (English)Conference paper, Oral presentation with published abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Multipath TCP (MPTCP) is an extension to traditionalTCP that enables a number of performance advantages,which were not offered before. While the protocol specificationis close to being finalized, there still remain some concernsregarding deployability and security. This paper describes theon going work to develop a solution that will facilitate thedeployment of MPTCP. The solution will not only allow non-MPTCP capable end-hosts to benefit from MPTCP performancegains, but also help ease the network security concerns that manymiddleboxes face due to the possibility of data stream beingfragmented across multiple subflows.

National Category
Computer Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-39059 (URN)
Conference
The 11th Swedish National Computer Networking Workshop (SNCNW), Karlstad, Sweden, May 28–29, 2015
Projects
HITS, 4707
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2016-01-18 Created: 2016-01-18 Last updated: 2019-11-11Bibliographically approved
Afzal, Z. & Lindskog, S. (2015). Automated Testing of IDS Rules. In: Software Testing, Verification and Validation Workshops (ICSTW), 2015 IEEE Eighth International Conference on: . Paper presented at 6th International Workshop on Security Testing (SECTEST) - IEEE Eighth International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation Workshops (ICSTW), 13-17 April 2015, Graz. IEEE
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Automated Testing of IDS Rules
2015 (English)In: Software Testing, Verification and Validation Workshops (ICSTW), 2015 IEEE Eighth International Conference on, IEEE, 2015Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

As technology becomes ubiquitous, new vulnerabilities are being discovered at a rapid rate. Security experts continuously find ways to detect attempts to exploit those vulnerabilities. The outcome is an extremely large and complex rule set used by Intrusion Detection Systems (IDSs) to detect and prevent the vulnerabilities. The rule sets have become so large that it seems infeasible to verify their precision or identify overlapping rules. This work proposes a methodology consisting of a set of tools that will make rule management easier.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE, 2015
National Category
Computer Sciences
Research subject
Computer Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:kau:diva-38996 (URN)10.1109/ICSTW.2015.7107461 (DOI)000373338600057 ()978-1-4799-1885-0 (ISBN)
Conference
6th International Workshop on Security Testing (SECTEST) - IEEE Eighth International Conference on Software Testing, Verification and Validation Workshops (ICSTW), 13-17 April 2015, Graz
Projects
HITS, 4707
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2016-01-11 Created: 2016-01-11 Last updated: 2019-11-11Bibliographically approved
Organisations
Identifiers
ORCID iD: ORCID iD iconorcid.org/0000-0003-0778-4736

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