ISTS Bulletin. As the New Year began, David Kotz's term as. ISTS researchers have been busy presenting. Thank You David Kotz.

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ISTS Bulletin Winter/ Spring Volume 5, Number 1 ISTS On the Road ISTS researchers have been busy presenting their findings since our last newsletter. In the following dispatches,
ISTS Bulletin Winter/ Spring Volume 5, Number 1 ISTS On the Road ISTS researchers have been busy presenting their findings since our last newsletter. In the following dispatches, Sergey Bratus and Patrick Tsang provide trip reports on conferences at which they have presented. In August 2007, ISTS Research Associate Sergey Bratus gave a presentation at Defcon 15 on the packet and log data organization tools that were developed under the Kerf project. The Kerf project investigated the application of machine learning and data organization algorithms for automated log analysis, and, in particular, intrusion analysis. Its goal was to produce a new breed of algorithms that would help the analysts sift through logs in a more productive way, learning from the choices they made while browsing the data. Defcon is a hacker convention with a long history of disclosing critical vulnerabilities in ubiquitously used technologies; arguably, it is the most famous and influential one of its kind, and we, as a community of computer users, are much safer for it. In the last few years the conference itself has become an event frequently covered by major news media organizations. Its attendance has skyrocketed to over 7,000, a good part of which are feds (as the conference attendees generally refer to law enforcement and other government employees), security officers and researchers of major corporations, interested academics, and other white hats. One thing that unites the attendees is their focus on practice rather than theory, and the expectation of gaining practically applicable knowledge from every talk; as such, presenting to this group sometimes proves challenging. In October 2007, Sergey presented a paper on attacking and securing networked embedded devices built on commodity computing architectures at the Workshop on Embedded Systems Security, part of the Embedded Systems Week, held in Salzburg, Austria. (This year the workshop will be held in Atlanta, GA.) The work presented continued on page 2 Thank You David Kotz As the New Year began, David Kotz's term as the Executive Director of the Institute for Security Technology Studies (ISTS) came to an end. Dave held the position since 2004 and was the Director of Research and Development for the Institute the year prior to his appointment as Executive Director. Over the years, Dave's commitment and dedication to all aspects of the Institute were immeasurable - he is leaving ISTS in a strong position. Dave is already back to teaching and will continue to do so for the remainder of the academic year. David Kotz In July 2008, Dave and his family will move to India where he will begin a well-deserved twelve-month sabbatical at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. While there Dave will focus his research on wireless-network measurement and modeling, expanding on his work in the MAP project at ISTS. Dave will continue to play an active role in ISTS. He will act as principal investigator on several ISTS projects until he leaves for India and will contribute to ISTS as a faculty affiliate. Dave s efforts on the MAP and DIST projects will continue on and Dave will provide contributions to these programs even while in India. Dave is enthusiastic about the future of ISTS. The great thing about ISTS is that we have a strong and diverse group of interdisciplinary faculty, coupled with a rich infrastructure, bright technical staff and students, and supported by a fantastic administrative group. I look forward to working with the team to expand on ISTS s past successes and forge new directions in cyber security and trust. We want to thank Dave for all he has done for ISTS, Dartmouth, and information security during his time as Executive Director. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors and are glad to know that while he is stepping down as the Director, he will still be working closely with us. Inside This Issue Martin N. Wybourne Vice Provost for Research Behavioral Fingerprinting of Wireless Devices... 2 Secure Information Systems Mentoring and Training... 3 Business Essentials for the Information Security Professional... 4 Virtual Terrorism Response Academy (VTRA)... 4 Faculty Profile... 6 was partly a result of ISTS involvement in the Campus Security Initiative started by Dartmouth s Peter Kiewit Computing Service s leadership, and was based on hacking a particular device that was at one point deployed throughout the Dartmouth network. A large part of the presentation described sophisticated attacks (such as various side-channel attacks) on widely deployed devices. Sergey reports that chatting with industry people who deal with automotive embedded systems was a real eye-opener: e.g., he had never thought of his car as a network -- just as prone to design compromises, and therefore, possibly, just as attackable as more familiar network types. In February, Sergey and ISTS researchers Cory Cornelius and Dan Peebles presented their active access point fingerprinting tool at the Shmoocon 4 hacker conference. (The Fingerprinting project is detailed in the article, Behavioral Fingerprinting of Wireless Devices.) Shmoocon is a relatively recent addition to the hacker convention scene, started by the Shmoo group of hackers, whose primary interest was in all things wireless. Once advertised, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, as conveniently located close to all of your favorite three-letter agencies, this Washington, D.C. area event is well-attended by security researchers who work in the area. The more academic part of their fingerprinting work will be presented at the First ACM Conference of Wireless Security (WiSec 08) in Alexandria, VA March 31 April 2. This conference brings together researchers exploring the wide range of present and future wireless networking technologies, from the entrenched and cellular to metropolitan, vehicular, ad hoc, satellite, underwater, and sensor networks, as well as RFID. Finally, in April, Sergey gave an invited talk presenting the analysis tools and approaches that came out of the Kerf project and subsequent work at Troopers08 in Munich, Germany. Troopers08 is an international IT security practitioner conference, intended to introduce the attendees, that range from corporate officers and auditors to adminstrators and consultants, to in-depth knowledge about attacking and defending IT infrastructure. At the 14th ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security (CCS '07) held last October in Alexandria, VA, Patrick Tsang presented the paper Black listable Anonymous Credentials: Blocking Misbehaving Users without TTPs he co-authored with Man Ho Au, Apu Kapadia and Sean Smith. The presented paper introduces the BLacklistable Anonymous Credential (BLAC) system, the first cryptographic construction of an anonymous credential system with provable security that allows services to judge user misbehavior and blacklist misbehaving anonymous users without relying on trusted third parties that are capable of revoking the privacy of users at will. Since blacklisted users remain anonymous, misbehaviors can be judged subjectively without users fearing arbitrary deanonymization by a TTP. Anonymous access to services such as Wikipedia and YouTube empowers users to disseminate content without the fear of persecution a user may add political content on Page 2 Wikipedia that is forbidden by his or her government, or post a video of police brutality to YouTube. In such cases, while Wikipedia and YouTube may want to penalize users who deface webpages or post copyrighted material, it is of paramount importance for services to preserve the anonymity of their well-behaving users. By guaranteeing anonymity to all users, anonymous blacklisting allows services to penalize misbehavior without the risk of exposing legitimate users such as political dissenters. In several existing credential systems, users can authenticate to services anonymously. Since anonymity can give users the license to misbehave, some variants allow the selective deanonymization (or linking) of misbehaving users upon a complaint to a trusted third party. The ability of the TTP to revoke a user's privacy at any time, however, is too strong a punishment for misbehavior. To limit the scope of deanonymization, systems such as e-cash have been proposed in which users are deanonymized under only certain types of well-defined misbehavior such as double spending. While useful in some applications, it is not possible to generalize such techniques to more subjective definitions of misbehavior. The annual ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security is a leading international forum for information security researchers, practitioners, developers and users from academia, government and industry to explore cutting-edge ideas and results, as well as to exchange techniques, tools, and experiences. Behavioral Fingerprinting of Wireless Devices In 2007 ISTS, through a grant from the Department of Justice s Bureau of Justice Assistance, provided seed funding for a wireless device fingerprinting project. The goal of this project was to provide link-layer only tools that could determine some facts about the make, chipset and driver of a wireless station, even if it tried to masquerade as another kind of device (for example, a laptop trying to masquerade as a legitimate access point to lure unsuspecting users). While various OSI Layer 3 TCP/IP fingerprinting tools have long become the mainstay of security assessment and penetration testing, Layer 2 approaches and tools have been conspicuously lacking. The Fingerprinting Team set out to fill that gap. At heart, the Team s approach is very simple: they identify a device such as an access point (AP) by engaging it in a standard frame exchange, except that the frames they send are non-standard, downright malformed, or do not make sense according to the specifications. However, for reasons of performance or for the sake of accommodating new features that set them apart from the competition, different vendors dispensed with different sanity checks on incoming frames, so that their products respond to some of the non-sensical ones. The specific set characterizes their product among others with some accuracy and gives one the capability to distinguish between different chipset driver combinations. One important circumstance lends additional value to this capability. It appears that the authors of early security mechanisms (such as WEP) based their design on the perimeter defense or castle vs. barbarians threat model: APs could authenticate a client station such as a laptop by checking whether they had knowledge of a shared secret, but clients lacked a mechanism for authenticating the APs. As it turned out, the real threat was elsewhere: most high-profile attacks started with tricking clients into attempting to associate with the wrong AP, an evil twin of the real one. The client, usually a laptop, was then snooped upon or exploited. Thus it was not enough to keep barbarians outside, it was also important to make sure that the clients could find the right castles (APs). Subsequent authentication protocols such as WPA2 Enterprise provided the clients with a cryptographic mechanism to authenticate an AP as belonging to a trusted set. Problem solved? Unfortunately, many drivers that implement their devices link layer functionality and are therefore necessary to support the mutual cryptographic authentication, were shown to be vulnerable to malicious frames, giving the attacker remote code execution, and thus full kernel-level control! This is not surprising, considering the complexity of the link layer, designed to accommodate many features envisioned by various vendors, some of which never materialized, but still has protocol elements reserved for them. Succinctly put, complexity kills. Thus, despite solid cryptographic solutions, a rather odd chicken-and-egg problem persists: it is best to avoid communicating with an untrusted AP, but such trust can only be established through communication. Since in the initial phases of such communications it is trivial for an attacker to spoof APs that a client is looking for, we end up with a conundrum. The Team s fingerprinting tool provides some help in such situations: if it recognizes an evil twin is based on a different vendor s architecture, it can alert the user of this fact. Fingerprinting can be used as a secret handshake to help validate the AP, prior to any other more complex (and thus more risky) exchanges. Naturally, a range of more traditional fingerprinting uses is possible: reconnaissance, finding unauthorized APs, and so on. See more about the Fingerprinting Project Team in the ISTS On the Road section. Secure Information Systems Mentoring and Training As part of its core educational mission, ISTS is sponsoring a program to help foster expertise in information security at small colleges and liberal arts institutions throughout the Northeast and New England. The SISMAT (Secure Information Systems Mentoring and Training) program seeks to help train undergraduates in a variety of areas, including network security tools, basic cryptography concepts, and secure protocols. SISMAT combines intense hands-on training, a paid internship, and independent research support for students who will be college juniors or seniors during the school year. SISMAT is recruiting computer science students with an interest and aptitude for security-related thinking and problem solving. The ability to work well with others, think creatively, absorb a variety of information in a short amount of time, and a desire to practically apply that knowledge are all more important than a student s GPA, although academic qualifications are also a factor in program admission. SISMAT especially seeks students from populations traditionally underrepresented in computer science, including women and minorities. As the demand from industry, government, and other sectors for skilled information technology and computer science graduates grows, a critical part of that demand is for knowledgeable, competent security specialists who understand the interplay between security and complex systems. One of the primary purposes of SISMAT is to identify motivated and talented undergraduates and inculcate them with an appreciation for the issues involved in monitoring networks and managing the interplay of cryptosystems. Dartmouth and ISTS have particular expertise in these two areas, which helps distinguish SISMAT from other security crash courses. The selected undergraduates will be invited to participate in the SISMAT training course, a two-week seminar to be held at Dartmouth from June 16 to June 27. The seminar will incorporate both lecture-style meetings, guest speakers, and extensive lab work meant to give participants hands-on experience with the tools used in the real world. After the seminar, students will then undertake an internship in information security using the techniques they have learned at Dartmouth. SISMAT also aims to help students and their faculty mentors grow the systems security and cryptography curriculum at their home institution. To this end, students will undertake a mentored research project in security in the Fall semester following their internship. These mentored research projects are an ideal way to develop the curriculum for a security topics course that the faculty member wants to lead. SISMAT is in its inaugural, pilot year. SISMAT will help educate a new generation of security professionals to meet the needs of commercial, governmental, and non-profit organizations, as well as facilitate the improvement of security education throughout the region. The program's focus (Public Key Infrastructures and trusted systems) reflects areas of expertise that these organizations currently desire in security interns or new employees. We are excited about the possibilities and relationships this type of program can help nurture, and its potential to enhance Dartmouth s reputation as a center for excellence in practical information security. If you are a student interested in applying to the program, a professor interested in taking on a mentoring role, or an organization interested in hosting a SISMAT intern, please see our website (http://www.cs. for more information or contact us at Page 3 Business Essentials for the Information Security Professional Tuck s Center for Digital Strategies and Tuck Executive Education at Dartmouth have developed a new program entitled Business Essentials for the Information Security Professional, which will be held on May 12-16, 2008 at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. This program, sponsored in part by ISTS through a grant from the Department of Homeland Security s National Cyber Security Division (NCSD), is designed for chief information security officers (CISOs) and their direct reports seeking to enhance their fundamental business skills and knowledge, to complement their technical expertise and to communicate more effectively with other strategic business leaders in the company. Many security professionals Hans Brechbühl and Eric Johnson find their security initiatives hindered because of their inability to communicate effectively within their firms, says Hans Brechbühl, executive director of the Center for Digital Strategies and the program s faculty director. Simply understanding the technology and the technical risks is often not enough to generate action. Security executives must understand how the issues tie in across the enterprise to help them communicate information security risk in a way that the rest of the business will hear and understand its importance. Developed in part through the Center for Digital Strategies research and through workshops with leading CISOs from Global 1000 firms, this program will convey business concepts and skills that will help the information security professional to better understand how business leaders think, to appreciate organizational dynamics, to build an information security strategy, and to create a business case for security investments. The program will feature expert faculty from the Tuck School of Business, including Paul Argenti, Pino Audia, Sydney Finkelstein, Stephen Powell, and Kent Womack, and a curriculum tailored to the needs of today's information security professional. Over the course of the four days, executives will be engaged in the following topic areas: Strategic Thinking and Planning; Leadership, Change, and Organizations; Communications, Power, and Influence; Risk, Investment, and Decision-Making; and Program/Project Management and Governance. These topics will be presented through a variety of methods, including short lecture presentations, case discussions, interactive projects, and individual and small group exercises. While this program will certainly have a significant impact on the practice of security management, said Eric Johnson, director of the Center for Digital Strategies, we also believe it will represent leading-edge education and be a powerful way to bring top information security professionals into the research process at Dartmouth bringing theory and practice of information security closer together. For more information about this program, contact Jennifer Childs, Program Manager for the Center for Digital Strategies, at , or visit the program website at www. Virtual Terrorism Response Academy (VTRA) In January 2007, Dartmouth College s Interactive Media Laboratory (IML) released a training program designed to teach fire, EMS, and law-enforcement personnel how to respond to WMD incidents. In the 16 months since its release, the program has been adopted and implemented across the United States. The program is called Ops-Plus for WMD Hazmat, and it is the first course in the Virtual Terrorism Response Academy (VTRA). Ops-Plus uses video-game-style tactic
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