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Publication Citation: An Efficient Approach to Assessing the Risk of Zero-Day Vulnerabilities

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Author(s): M. Albanese; Sushil Jajodia; Anoop Singhal; Lingyu Wang;
Title: An Efficient Approach to Assessing the Risk of Zero-Day Vulnerabilities
Published: July 31, 2013
Abstract: Computer systems are vulnerable to both known and zero-day attacks. Although known attack patterns can be easily modeled, thus enabling the definition of suitable hardening strategies, handling zero-day vulnerabilities is inherently difficult due to their unpredictable nature. Previous research has attempted to assess the risk associated with unknown attack patterns, and a metric to quantify such risk, the k-zero-day safety metric, has been defined. However, existing algorithms for computing this metric are not scalable, and assume that complete zero-day attack graphs have been generated, which may be unfeasible in practice for large networks. In this paper, we propose a framework comprising a suite of polynomial algorithms for estimating the k-zero-day safety of possibly large networks efficiently, without pre-computing the entire attack graph. We validate our approach experimentally, and show that the proposed solution is computationally efficient and accurate.
Conference: 10th International Conference on Security and Cryptography (SECRYPT 2013)
Proceedings: E-Business and Telecommunications (Communications in Computer and Information Science)
Volume: 456
Pages: pp. 322 - 340
Location: Reykjavik, -1
Dates: July 29-31, 2013
Keywords: attack graphs; vulnerability analysis; zero-day
Research Areas: Computer Security, Cybersecurity
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-44788-8_19  (Note: May link to a non-U.S. Government webpage)
PDF version: PDF Document Click here to retrieve PDF version of paper (421KB)