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See detailANCHOR: logically-centralized security for Software-Defined Networks
Kreutz, Diego UL; Yu, Jiangshan UL; Ramos, Fernando M. V. et al

in CoRR (2017), abs/1711.03636

Software-de ned networking (SDN) decouples the control and data planes of traditional networks, logically centralizing the functional properties of the network in the SDN controller. While this ... [more ▼]

Software-de ned networking (SDN) decouples the control and data planes of traditional networks, logically centralizing the functional properties of the network in the SDN controller. While this centralization brought advantages such as a faster pace of innovation, it also disrupted some of the natural defenses of traditional architectures against di erent threats. The literature on SDN has mostly been concerned with the functional side, despite some speci c works concerning non-functional properties like ‘security’ or ‘dependability’. Though addressing the latter in an ad-hoc, piecemeal way, may work, it will most likely lead to e ciency and e ectiveness problems. We claim that the enforcement of non-functional properties as a pillar of SDN robustness calls for a systemic approach. We further advocate, for its materialization, the re-iteration of the successful formula behind SDN – ‘logical centralization’. As a general concept, we propose anchor, a subsystem architecture that promotes the logical centralization of non-functional properties. To show the e ectiveness of the concept, we focus on ‘security’ in this paper: we identify the current security gaps in SDNs and we populate the architecture middleware with the appropriate security mechanisms, in a global and consistent manner. anchor sets to provide essential security mechanisms such as strong entropy, resilient pseudo-random generators, secure device registration and association, among other crucial services. We claim and justify in the paper that centralizing such mechanisms is key for their e ectiveness, by allowing us to: de ne and enforce global policies for those properties; reduce the complexity of controllers and forwarding devices; ensure higher levels of robustness for critical services; foster interoperability of the non-functional property enforcement mechanisms; and nally, better foster the resilience of the architecture itself. We discuss design and implementation aspects, and we prove and evaluate our algorithms and mechanisms. [less ▲]

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See detailThe KISS principle in Software-Defined Networking: An architecture for Keeping It Simple and Secure
Kreutz, Diego UL; Verissimo, Paulo UL; Magalhaes, Catia et al

Report (2017)

Security is an increasingly fundamental requirement in Software-Defined Networking (SDN). However, the pace of adoption of secure mechanisms has been slow, which we estimate to be a consequence of the ... [more ▼]

Security is an increasingly fundamental requirement in Software-Defined Networking (SDN). However, the pace of adoption of secure mechanisms has been slow, which we estimate to be a consequence of the performance overhead of traditional solutions and of the complexity of the support infrastructure required. As a first step to addressing these problems, we propose a modular secure SDN control plane communications architecture, KISS, with innovative solutions in the context of key distribution and secure channel support. A comparative analysis of the performance impact of essential security primitives guided our selection of basic primitives for KISS. We further propose iDVV, the integrated device verification value, a deterministic but indistinguishable-from-random secret code generation protocol, allowing the local but synchronized generation/verification of keys at both ends of the channel, even on a per-message basis. iDVV is expected to give an important contribution both to the robustness and simplification of the authentication and secure communication problems in SDN. We show that our solution, while offering the same security properties, outperforms reference alternatives, with performance improvements up to 30% over OpenSSL, and improvement in robustness based on a code footprint one order of magnitude smaller. Finally, we also prove and test randomness of the proposed algorithms. [less ▲]

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See detailOn the Road to the Softwarization of Networking
Ramos, Fernando M. V.; Kreutz, Diego UL; Verissimo, Paulo UL

in Cutter IT Journal (2015), 28

Traditional computer networks are complex and very hard to manage. To express the desired policies, network operators need to configure each individual network device, one by one, either manually or with ... [more ▼]

Traditional computer networks are complex and very hard to manage. To express the desired policies, network operators need to configure each individual network device, one by one, either manually or with the use of low-level scripts. In addition to configuration complexity, network environments have to endure the dynamics of faults and adapt to load changes. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 105 (9 UL)
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See detailSoftware-Defined Networking: A Comprehensive Survey
Kreutz, Diego UL; Ramos, F. M. V.; Verissimo, Paulo UL et al

in Proceedings of the IEEE (2015), 103(1), 14-76

The Internet has led to the creation of a digital society, where (almost) everything is connected and is accessible from anywhere. However, despite their widespread adoption, traditional IP networks are ... [more ▼]

The Internet has led to the creation of a digital society, where (almost) everything is connected and is accessible from anywhere. However, despite their widespread adoption, traditional IP networks are complex and very hard to manage. It is both difficult to configure the network according to predefined policies, and to reconfigure it to respond to faults, load, and changes. To make matters even more difficult, current networks are also vertically integrated: the control and data planes are bundled together. Software-defined networking (SDN) is an emerging paradigm that promises to change this state of affairs, by breaking vertical integration, separating the network's control logic from the underlying routers and switches, promoting (logical) centralization of network control, and introducing the ability to program the network. The separation of concerns, introduced between the definition of network policies, their implementation in switching hardware, and the forwarding of traffic, is key to the desired flexibility: by breaking the network control problem into tractable pieces, SDN makes it easier to create and introduce new abstractions in networking, simplifying network management and facilitating network evolution. In this paper, we present a comprehensive survey on SDN. We start by introducing the motivation for SDN, explain its main concepts and how it differs from traditional networking, its roots, and the standardization activities regarding this novel paradigm. Next, we present the key building blocks of an SDN infrastructure using a bottom-up, layered approach. We provide an in-depth analysis of the hardware infrastructure, southbound and northbound application programming interfaces (APIs), network virtualization layers, network operating systems (SDN controllers), network programming languages, and network applications. We also look at cross-layer problems such as debugging and troubleshooting. In an effort to anticipate the future evolution of this - ew paradigm, we discuss the main ongoing research efforts and challenges of SDN. In particular, we address the design of switches and control platforms—with a focus on aspects such as resiliency, scalability, performance, security, and dependability—as well as new opportunities for carrier transport networks and cloud providers. Last but not least, we analyze the position of SDN as a key enabler of a software-defined environment. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 557 (37 UL)
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See detailThe KISS principle in Software-Defined Networking: a framework for secure communications
Kreutz, Diego UL; Yu, Jiangshan UL; Verissimo, Paulo UL et al

in IEEE Security & Privacy Magazine (n.d.)

Security is an increasingly fundamental requirement in Software-Defined Networking (SDN). However, the pace of adoption of secure mechanisms has been slow, which we estimate to be a consequence of the ... [more ▼]

Security is an increasingly fundamental requirement in Software-Defined Networking (SDN). However, the pace of adoption of secure mechanisms has been slow, which we estimate to be a consequence of the performance overhead of traditional solutions and of the complexity of their support infrastructure. To address these challenges we propose KISS, a secure SDN control plane communications architecture that includes innovative solutions in the context of key distribution and secure channel support. Core to our contribution is the integrated device verification value (iDVV), a deterministic but indistinguishable-from-random secret code generation protocol that allows local but synchronized generation/verification of keys at both ends of the control channel, even on a per-message basis. We show that our solution, while offering the same security properties, outperforms reference alternatives, with performance improvements up to 30% over OpenSSL, and improvement in robustness based on a code footprint one order of magnitude smaller. [less ▲]

Detailed reference viewed: 51 (11 UL)