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Publication Citation: Limitations to Threshold Random Walk Scan Detection and Mitigating Enhancements

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Author(s): Peter M. Mell; Richard Harang;
Title: Limitations to Threshold Random Walk Scan Detection and Mitigating Enhancements
Published: October 16, 2013
Abstract: This paper discusses limitations in one of the most widely cited single source scan detection algorithms: threshold random walk (TRW). If an attacker knows that TRW is being employed, these limitations enable full circumvention allowing undetectable high speed full horizontal and vertical scanning of target networks from a single IP address. To mitigate the discovered limitations, we provide 3 enhancements to TRW and analyze the increased cost in computational complexity and memory. Even with these mitigations in place, circumvention is still possible but only through collaborative scanning (something TRW was not designed to detect) with a significant increase in the required level of effort and usage of resources.
Conference: First IEEE Conference on Communications and Network Security
Proceedings: Proceeding of the First IEEE Conference on Communications and Network Security
Pages: pp. 332 - 340
Location: Washington D.C., DC
Dates: October 14-16, 2013
Keywords: scanning; intrusion detection; computer security
Research Areas: Computer Security
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/CNS.2013.6682723  (Note: May link to a non-U.S. Government webpage)
PDF version: PDF Document Click here to retrieve PDF version of paper (921KB)