Alex C. Snoeren, Craig
Partridge, Luis A. Sanchez, Christine E. Jones, Fabrice Tchakountio,
Beverly Schwartz, Stephen T. Kent, and W. Timothy Strayer.
To appear in IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking (ToN), Volume 10, Number 6, December 2002.
The design of the IP protocol makes it difficult to reliably identify the originator of an IP packet. Even in the absence of any deliberate attempt to disguise a packet's origin, wide-spread packet forwarding techniques such as NAT and encapsulation may obscure the packet's true source. Techniques have been developed to determine the source of large packet flows, but, to date, no system has been presented to track individual packets in an efficient, scalable fashion. We present a hash-based technique for IP traceback that generates audit trails for traffic within the network, and can trace the origin of a single IP packet delivered by the network in the recent past. We demonstrate that the system is effective, space-efficient (requiring approximately 0.5% of the link capacity per unit time in storage), and implementable in current or next-generation routing hardware. We present both analytic and simulation results showing the system's effectiveness.
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(A preliminary version of this paper appeared in ACM SIGCOMM 2001, August 2001.)