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Abstract - Security Symposium - 2000

A Multi-Layer IPsec Protocol

Yongguang Zhang and Bikramjit Singh, HRL Laboratories, LLC


IPsec is a suite of standard protocols that provides security services for Internet communications. It protects the entire IP datagram in an "end-to-end" fashion; no intermediate network node in the public Internet can access or modify any information above the IP layer in an IPsec-protected packet. However, recent advances in internet technology introduce a rich new set of services and applications, like traffic engineering, TCP performance enhancements, or transparent proxying and caching, all of which require intermediate network nodes to access a certain part of an IP datagram, usually the upper layer protocol information, to perform flow classification, constraint-based routing, or other customized processing. This is in direct conflict with the IPsec mechanisms. In this research, we propose a multi-layer security protection scheme for IPsec, which uses a finer-grain access control to allow trusted intermediate routers to read and write selected portions of IP datagrams (usually the headers) in a secure and controlled manner.
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Last changed: 29 Jan. 2002 ml
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