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There is no impenetrable system - So, why we are still waiting to get breached?

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This is some input for a panel discussion about "Security and Safety in Cloud-based Systems and Services" (9th International Conference on Cloud Computing, GRIDs, and Virtualization (CLOUD COMPUTING 2018) in Barcelona, Spain in February 2018).

Although it might be hard to accept. By principle, attackers can establish footholds in our systems whenever they want (zero-day exploits). Cloud application security engineering efforts focus to harden the "fortress walls". Therefore, cloud applications rely on these defensive walls but seldom attack intruders actively. There is the somehow the need for a more reactive component. A component that could be inspired by biological systems. Biological systems consider by design that defensive "walls" can be breached at several layers. So, biological systems provide an additional active defense system to attack potential successful intruders - an immune system. Although several experts find this approach "intriguing", there are follow-up questions arising. What is about exploits that adapt to bio-inspired systems? How to protect the immune system against direct attacks? Are cloud immune systems prone to phenomenons like fever (running hot) or auto-immune diseases (self-attacking)?

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There is no impenetrable system - So, why we are still waiting to get breached?

  1. 1. There is no impenetrable system So, why we are still waiting to get breached? Nane Kratzke Panel Discussion: “Security and Safety in Cloud-based Systems and Services“ 9th International Conference on Cloud Computing, GRIDs, and Virtualization (CLOUD COMPUTING 2018); Barcelona, Spain, 2018
  2. 2. The Fortress Walls of Cloud Applications Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 2 • Security Groups • Firewalls • VPNs • Intrusion Detection Systems • Unattended Security Updates • Symmetric and asymmetric encryption • Password (checks) • SSH Keys • Authentication • Authorization • Two (Multi) Factor Authentication • …
  3. 3. How to defense against unknown vulnerabilities? Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 3 Reported in January 2018. Mainly x86 microprocessors with out-of-order execution and branch-prediction affected since 1995 (says Google). CVE-2017-5754 CVE-2017-5715 CVE-2017-5753 I started my computer science studies in 1996! My microprocessorprofessor told me,out-of-order execution and branch-prediction isone of the coolestthings on earth.
  4. 4. How long can presence be maintained? Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 4 Answer: Surprisingly long!
  5. 5. Some scary considerations • In principle attackers can establish footholds in our systems whenever they want (zero-day exploits) • Cloud application security engineering efforts focus to harden the fortress walls. • Cloud applications rely on their defensive walls but seldom attack intruders actively. Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 5
  6. 6. We need a reactive component as well Biological systems are different. Defensive “walls” can be breached at several layers. An additional active defense system is needed to attack potential successful intruders - an immune system. Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 6
  7. 7. Let us make the game more challenging for the attacker (act, do not react) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 7 We can create a race between a manual (time-intensive) breach and a fully automatic (and fast) regeneration. Regenerated node (randomly chosen at some point in time) Successfully breached node (lateral movement)
  8. 8. It is all about Pets versus Cattle Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 8 • Assume you are a rancher • Assume one of your cattle is deadly infectious • Be professional, shoot – and replace it • Yes, life is not fair (maybe for the cute kitty) • However, we should remember that for security (and that zero-day attacks are not fair as well)
  9. 9. Immune systems for cloud applications? Yes, there are questions worth to be discussed … • Can we reduce regenerations? • Can we identify suspect nodes automatically? • Limited to what kind of applications? • What is about exploits/attacks that are adaptable to bio- inspired systems? • How to protect the regeneration mechanism against attackers? • Are cloud immune systems prone to phenomenons like fever (running hot) or auto-immune diseases (self- attacking)? Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 9
  10. 10. Acknowledgement • Ninja: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) • Fortress: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) • Bowman: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) • Cattle: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) • Cell: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) • Air Transport: Pixabay (CC0 Public Domain) Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 10 Picture Reference Our research is funded by German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (13FH021PX4). Presentation URL
  11. 11. About Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Nane Kratzke Computer Science and Business Information Systems 11 Nane Kratzke CoSA: http://cosa.fh-luebeck.de/en/contact/people/n-kratzke Blog: http://www.nkode.io Twitter: @NaneKratzke GooglePlus: +NaneKratzke LinkedIn: https://de.linkedin.com/in/nanekratzke GitHub: https://github.com/nkratzke ResearchGate: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Nane_Kratzke SlideShare: http://de.slideshare.net/i21aneka

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