Denial of Service Attacks on 802.1X Security Protocol   [open pdf - 2MB]

Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs) are quickly becoming popular in daily life. Users are adopting the latest technology to save time and costs. In addition, WLANs are providing high-speed network access to the users. There are security concerns with WLANs that must be considered when deploying them over critical infrastructure, such as military and administrative government LANs. The IEEE 802.11 wireless standard specifies both an authentication service and encryption protocol, but research has demonstrated that these protocols are severely flawed. The IEEE has established a new workgroup, the IEEE 802.11i, to address all the security vulnerabilities of the 802.11 security protocol. The workgroup proposed using the IEEE 802.1X Port-Based Network Access Control Standard as an interim measure to meet the security requirements of the WLANs and to maintain the confidentiality, authenticity, and availability of the data until the workgroup is finished with the new specifications. Using an open-source test-bed for evaluating DoS attacks on WLANs, this thesis demonstrates four different DoS attacks that verify the weaknesses of the IEEE 802.1X protocol. Solutions are provided to mitigate the effects of such DoS attacks.

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Naval Postgraduate School, Dudley Knox Library: http://www.nps.edu/Library/index.aspx
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