Abstract: The utilization of information hiding is on the rise among cybercriminals, e.g. to cloak the communication of malicious software as well as by ordinary users for privacy-enhancing purposes. A recent trend is to use network traffic in form of covert channels to convey secrets. In result, security expert training is incomplete if these aspects are not covered.
This paper fills this gap by providing a method for teaching covert channel analysis of network protocols. We define a sample protocol called Covert Channel Educational Analysis Protocol (CCEAP) that can be used in didactic environments. In addition, compared to previous works we lower the barrier for understanding network covert channels by eliminating the requirement for students to understand several network protocols in advance.
Keywords: Covert Channels; Steganography; Information Hiding
Teaching network information hiding is considered a challenging task. Students must first master network protocols, followed by the basics of information security, and finally steganography in networks.
CCEAP is a protocol that is vulnerable against several covert channels and that eliminates the need to teach several other network protocols in advance (and to switch between them) just to explain network information hiding fundamentals.
It is our pleasure to announce our new book that was released this month. The title Information Hiding in Communication Networks by W. Mazurcuyk, S. Wendzel, S. Zander, A. Houmansadr and K. Szczypiorski covers one chapter (#3) that is basically structured by the hiding patterns you find on this website but adds a few additional ones. In addition, the book introduces a novel terminology for network information hiding.
research discipline of network steganography deals with the hiding of
information within network transmissions, e.g. to transfer illicit
information in networks with Internet censorship. The
last decades of research on network steganography led to more than
hundred techniques for hiding data in network transmissions. However,
previous research has shown that most of these hiding techniques are
either based on the same idea or introduce limited novelty, enabling the
application of existing countermeasures. In a new paper, Steffen Wendzel and Carolin Palmer provide a link between the field of creativity and
network steganographic research. We propose a framework and a metric to
help evaluating the creativity bound to a given hiding technique. This
way, we support two sides of the scientific peer review process as both
authors and reviewers can use our framework to analyze the novelty and
applicability of hiding techniques. At the same time, we contribute to a
uniform terminology in network steganography.
We published our collection of `hiding patterns' online for easy accessibility by the information hiding community. We hope to foster the development of novel hiding methods and countermeasures in the near future by our collection and welcome your comments.
With the best regards,
Steffen Wendzel, Sebastian Zander, Bernhard Fechner, Christian Herdin