You are here

Best Student Paper

We show how an off-path (spoofing-only) attacker can perform cross-site scripting (XSS), cross-site request forgery (CSRF) and site spoofing/defacement attacks, without requiring vulnerabilities in either web-browser or server, and circumventing known defenses. The attacks are practical and require a puppet (malicious script in browser sandbox) running on a victim client machine, and an attacker capable of IP-spoofing on the Internet.

Our attacks are based on a technique that allows an offpath attacker to efficiently learn the sequence numbers of both the client and server in a TCP connection. This technique exploits the fact that many computers, in particular those running (any recent version of) Windows, use a global IP-ID counter, which provides a side channel allowing efficient exposure of the connection sequence numbers.

We present results of experiments evaluating the learning technique and the attacks that exploit it. We also present practical defenses that can be deployed at the firewall level, either at the client or server end; no changes to existing TCP/IP stacks are required.

Today’s social networking services require users to trust the service provider with the confidentiality and integrity of their data. But with their history of data leaks and privacy controversies, these services are not always deserving of this trust. Indeed, a malicious provider could not only violate users’ privacy, it could equivocate and show different users divergent views of the system’s state. Such misbehavior can lead to numerous harms including surreptitious censorship.

In light of these threats, this paper presents Frientegrity, a framework for social networking applications that can be realized with an untrusted service provider. In Frientegrity, a provider observes only encrypted data and cannot deviate from correct execution without being detected. Prior secure social networking systems have either been decentralized, sacrificing the availability and convenience of a centralized provider, or have focused almost entirely on users’ privacy while ignoring the threat of equivocation. On the other hand, existing systems that are robust to equivocation do not scale to the needs social networking applications in which users may have hundreds of friends, and in which users are mainly interested the latest updates, not in the thousands that may have come before.

To address these challenges, we present a novel method for detecting provider equivocation in which clients collaborate to verify correctness. In addition, we introduce an access control mechanism that offers efficient revocation and scales logarithmically with the number of friends. We present a prototype implementation demonstrating that Frientegrity provides latency and throughput that meet the needs of a realistic workload.

Steven McCanne::Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory , Van Jacobson::Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory