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A Platform for Safer and Smarter Networks

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Title: A Platform for Safer and Smarter Networks
Author(s): Ibbad, Hafeez
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Science, Department of Computer Science
Discipline: Computer science
Language: English
Acceptance year: 2016
The number of devices connected to the Internet is growing exponentially. These devices include smartphones, tablets, workstations and Internet of Things devices, which offer a number of cost and time savings by automating routine tasks for the users. However, these devices also introduce a number of security and privacy concerns for the users. These devices are connected to small office/home-office (SOHO) and enterprise networks, where users have very little to no information about threats associated to these devices and how these devices can be managed properly to ensure user's privacy and data security. We proposed a new platform to automate the security and management of the networks providing connectivity to billions of connected devices. Our platform is low cost, scalable and easy to deploy system, which provides network security and management features as a service. It is consisted of two main components i.e. Securebox and Security and Management Service (SMS). Securebox is a newly designed Openflow enabled gateway residing in edge networks and is responsible for enforcing the security and management decisions provided by SMS. SMS runs a number of traffic analysis services to analyze user traffic on demand for Botnet, Spamnet, malware detection. SMS also supports to deploy on demand software based middleboxes for on demand analysis of user traffic in isolated environment. It handles the configuration update, load balancing and scalability of these middlebox deployments as well. In contrast to current state of the art, the proposed platform offloads the security and management tasks to an external entity, providing a number of advantages in terms of deployment, management, configuration updates and device security. We have tested this platform in real world scenarios. Evaluation results show that the platform can be efficiently deployed in traditional networks in an incremental manner. It also allows us to achieve similar user experience with security features embedded in the connectivity.

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