DOTS                                                            T. Reddy
Internet-Draft                                                   D. Wing
Intended status: Standards Track                                P. Patil
Expires: December 31, 2015                                     M. Geller
                                                            M. Boucadair
                                                          France Telecom
                                                           June 29, 2015

                      Co-operative DDoS Mitigation


   This document discusses mechanisms that a downstream Autonomous
   System (AS) can use, when it detects a potential Distributed Denial-
   of-Service (DDoS) attack, to request an upstream AS to perform
   inbound filtering in its ingress routers for traffic that the
   downstream AS wishes to drop.  The upstream AS can then undertake
   appropriate actions (including, blackhole, drop, rate-limit, or add
   to watch list) on the suspect traffic to the downstream AS thus
   reducing the effectiveness of the attack.

Status of This Memo

   This Internet-Draft is submitted in full conformance with the
   provisions of BCP 78 and BCP 79.

   Internet-Drafts are working documents of the Internet Engineering
   Task Force (IETF).  Note that other groups may also distribute
   working documents as Internet-Drafts.  The list of current Internet-
   Drafts is at

   Internet-Drafts are draft documents valid for a maximum of six months
   and may be updated, replaced, or obsoleted by other documents at any
   time.  It is inappropriate to use Internet-Drafts as reference
   material or to cite them other than as "work in progress."

   This Internet-Draft will expire on December 31, 2015.

Copyright Notice

   Copyright (c) 2015 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the
   document authors.  All rights reserved.

   This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal
   Provisions Relating to IETF Documents

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 1]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   ( in effect on the date of
   publication of this document.  Please review these documents
   carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect
   to this document.  Code Components extracted from this document must
   include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of
   the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as
   described in the Simplified BSD License.

Table of Contents

   1.  Introduction  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   2
   2.  Notational Conventions  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   3
   3.  Solution Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   4.  Protocol Requirements . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   4
   5.  Protocols for Consideration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
     5.1.  REST  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   5
       5.1.1.  Install black-list rules  . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   6
       5.1.2.  Remove black-list rules . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   8
       5.1.3.  Retrieving the black-list rules installed . . . . . .   8
       5.1.4.  TBD . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
     5.2.  BGP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   9
   6.  IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   7.  Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   8.  Acknowledgements  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   9.  References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
     9.1.  Normative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
     9.2.  Informative References  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  10
   Authors' Addresses  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  11

1.  Introduction

   A distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack is an attempt to make
   machines or network resources unavailable to their intended users.
   In most cases, sufficient scale can be achieved by compromising
   enough end-hosts and using those infected hosts to perpetrate and
   amplify the attack.  The victim in this attack can be an application
   server, a client, a router, a firewall, or an entire network, etc.
   The reader may refer, for example, to [REPORT] that reports the

   o  Very large DDoS attacks above the 100 Gbps threshold are

   o  DDoS attacks against customers remain the number one operational
      threat for service providers, with DDoS attacks against
      infrastructures being the top concern for 2014.

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 2]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   o  Over 60% of service providers are seeing increased demand for DDoS
      detection and mitigation services from their customers (2014),
      with just over one-third seeing the same demand as in 2013.

   Enterprises typically deploy DDoS monitoring appliances that are
   capable of inspecting and monitoring traffic to detect potential DDoS
   threats and generate alarms when some thresholds have been reached.
   Most of these tools are offline; further steps are required to
   introduce online tools that would have immediate effects on traffic
   associated with an ongoing attack.  Thanks to the activation of
   dynamic cooperative means, countermeasure actions can be enforced in
   early stages of an attack, which can optimize any service degradation
   that can be perceived by end users.

   This document describes a means for such enterprises to dynamically
   inform its access network of the IP addresses that are causing DDoS.
   The access network can use this information to discard flows from
   such IP addresses reaching the customer network.

   The proposed mechanism can also be used between applications from
   various vendors that are deployed within the same network, some of
   them are responsible for monitoring and detecting attacks while
   others are responsible for enforcing policies on appropriate network
   elements.  This cooperations contributes to a ensure a highly
   automated network that is also robust, reliable and secure.

   The advantage of the proposed mechanism is that the upstream AS can
   provide protection to the downstream AS from bandwidth-saturating
   DDoS traffic.  The proposed mechanism can also be coupled with
   policies to trigger how requests are issued.  Nevertheless, it is out
   of scope of this document to elaborate on an exhaustive list of such

   How a server determines which network elements should be modified to
   install appropriate filtering rules is out of scope.  A variety of
   mechanisms and protocols (including NETCONF) may be considered to
   exchange information through a communication interface between the
   server and these underlying elements; the selection of appropriate
   mechanisms and protocols to be invoked for that interfaces is

2.  Notational Conventions

   The key words "MUST", "MUST NOT", "REQUIRED", "SHALL", "SHALL NOT",
   document are to be interpreted as described in [RFC2119].

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 3]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

3.  Solution Overview

   Network applications have finite resources like CPU cycles, number of
   processes or threads they can create and use, maximum number of
   simultaneous connections it can handle, limited resources of the
   control plane, etc.  When processing network traffic, such an
   application uses these resources to offer its intended task in the
   most efficient fashion.  However, an attacker may be able to prevent
   the application from performing its intended task by causing the
   application to exhaust the finite supply of a specific resource.

   The complexity and the multitude of potential targets result in
   making DDoS detection a distributed system over a network.  Flood
   attacks can be detected at the entrance of the network, SYN floods
   may be detected by firewalls associated to behavioral analysis.
   Attacks on the link are carried out by sending enough traffic such
   that the link becomes excessively congested, and legitimate traffic
   suffers high packet loss.  Other possible DDoS attacks are discussed
   in [RFC4732].

   In each of the cases described above, if a network resource detects a
   potential DDoS attack from a set of IP addresses, the network
   resource informs its servicing router of all suspect IP addresses
   that need to be blocked or black-listed for further investigation.
   That router in-turn propagates the black-listed IP addresses to the
   access network and the access network blocks traffic from these IP
   addresses to the customer network thus reducing the effectiveness of
   the attack.  The network resource, after certain duration, requests
   the rules to block traffic from these IP addresses be removed.

   If a blacklisted IPv4 address is shared by multiple subscribers then
   the side effect of applying the black-list rule will be that traffic
   from non-attackers will also be blocked by the access network.

4.  Protocol Requirements

   The protocol requirements for co-operative DDoS mitigation are the

   o  Acknowledgement for the processing of a filtering request and the
      enforcement of associated countermeasures.
   o  Mechanism to delete a configured rule.
   o  Mechanism to convey lifetime of a rule.
   o  Mechanism to extend the validity of a rule.
   o  Mechanism to retrieve a list of filtering rules.
   o  Protocol needs to support "forward compatibility" where the
      network resource can tell the network entity what version it
      supports and vice-versa.  Any protocol describing attack

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 4]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

      mitigations needs forwards compatibility so that new attacks can
      be described while still allowing older peers (who do not yet
      understand the new attack) to provide some mitigation.
   o  The mechanism should support the ability to send a request to
      multiple destinations (e.g., multi-homing cases).
   o  Because multiple clients may be allowed to send requests on behalf
      of a downstream node, the mechanism should allow to signal
      conflicting requests.
   o  The request to install a filter may indicate an action (e.g.,
      block, add to a watch list, etc.).
   o  The mechanism must be transported over a reliable transport.

   The security requirements for co-operative DDoS mitigation are the

   o  There must be a mechanism for mutual authentication between the
      network resource that is signaling black-list rules and the
      network entity that uses the rules either to propagate the rules
      upstream or enforces the rules locally to block traffic from
   o  Integrity protection is necessary to ensure that a man-in-the-
      middle (MITM) device does not alter the rules.
   o  Replay protection is required to ensure that passive attacker does
      not replay old rules.

5.  Protocols for Consideration

   An access network can advertise support for filtering rules based on
   REST APIs.  A CPE router should use RESTful APIs discussed in this
   section to inform the access network of any desired IP filtering
   rules.  If the access network does not advertise support for REST,
   BGP can be used.  The means by which an access network can make this
   advertisement is outside the scope of this document.

5.1.  REST

   A network resource could use HTTP to provision and manage filters on
   the access network.  The network resource authenticates itself to the
   CPE router, which in turn authenticates itself to a server in the
   access network, creating a two-link chain of transitive
   authentication between the network resource and the access network.
   The CPE router validates if the network resource is authorized to
   signal the black-list rules.  Likewise, the server in the access
   network validates if the CPE router is authorized to signal the
   black-list rules.  To create or purge filters, the network resource
   sends HTTP requests to the CPE router.  The CPE router acts as HTTP
   proxy, validates the rules and proxies the HTTP requests containing
   the black-listed IP addresses to the HTTP server in the access

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 5]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   network.  When the HTTP proxy receives the associated HTTP response
   from the HTTP server, it propagates the response back to the network

   If an attack is detected by the CPE router then it can act as a HTTP
   client and signal the black-list rules to the access network.  Thus
   the CPE router plays the role of both HTTP client and HTTP proxy.

     Resource        CPE router        Access network      __________
   +-----------+    +----------+       +-------------+    /          \
   |           |____|          |_______|             |___ | Internet |
   |HTTP Client|    |HTTP Proxy|       | HTTP Server |    |          |
   |           |    |          |       |             |    |          |
   +-----------+    +----------+       +-------------+    \__________/

                                 Figure 1

   JSON [RFC7159] payloads can be used to convey both filtering rules as
   well as protocol-specific payload messages that convey request
   parameters and response information such as errors.

5.1.1.  Install black-list rules

   An HTTP POST request will be used to push black-list rules to the
   access network.

     POST {scheme}://{host}:{port}/.well-known/{version}/{URI suffix}
     Accept: application/json
     Content-type: application/json
        "policy-id": number,
        "traffic-protocol": string,
        "source-protocol-port": string,
        "destination-protocol-port": string,
        "destination-ip": string,
        "source-ip": string,
        "lifetime": number,
        "traffic-rate" : number,

                Figure 2: POST to install black-list rules

   The header fields are described below.

   policy-id:  Identifier of the policy represented using a number.
      This identifier must be unique for each policy bound to the same
      downstream network.  This identifier must be generated by the

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 6]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

      client and used as an opaque value by the server.  This document
      does not make any assumption about how this identifier is

   traffic-protocol:   Valid protocol values include tcp and udp.

   source-protocol-port:   For TCP or UDP: the source range of ports
      (e.g., 1024-65535).

   destination-protocol-port:   For TCP or UDP: the destination range of
      ports (e.g., 443-443).  This information is useful to avoid
      disturbing a group of customers when address sharing is in use

   destination-ip:   The destination IP addresses or prefixes.

   source-ip:   The source IP addresses or prefixes.

   lifetime:   Lifetime of the policy in seconds.  Indicates the
      validity of a rule.  Upon the expiry of this lifetime, and if the
      request is not reiterated, the rule will be withdrawn at the
      upstream network.  A null value is not allowed.

   traffic-rate:   This field carries the rate information in IEEE
      floating point [IEEE.754.1985] format, units being bytes per
      second.  A traffic-rate of '0' should result on all traffic for
      the particular flow to be discarded.

   The relative order of two rules is determined by comparing their
   respective policy identifiers.  The rule with lower numeric policy
   identifier value has higher precedence (and thus will match before)
   than the rule with higher numeric policy identifier value.

   Note: administrative-related clauses may be included as part of the
   request (such a contract Identifier or a customer identifier).  Those
   clauses are out of scope of this document.

   The following example shows POST request to block traffic from
   attacker IPv6 prefix 2001:db8:abcd:3f01::/64 to network resource
   using IPv6 address 2002:db8:6401::1 to provide HTTPS web service.

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 7]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

     Accept: application/json
     Content-type: application/json
        "policy-id": 123321333242,
        "traffic-protocol": "tcp",
        "source-protocol-port": "1-65535",
        "destination-protocol-port": "443",
        "destination-ip": "2001:db8:abcd:3f01::/64",
        "source-ip": "2002:db8:6401::1",
        "lifetime": 1800,
        "traffic-rate": 0,

                Figure 3: POST to install black-list rules

5.1.2.  Remove black-list rules

   An HTTP DELETE request will be used to delete the black-list rules
   programmed on the access network.

     DELETE {scheme}://{host}:{port}/.well-known/{URI suffix}
     Accept: application/json
     Content-type: application/json
        "policy-id": number

                   Figure 4: DELETE to remove the rules

5.1.3.  Retrieving the black-list rules installed

   An HTTP GET request will be used to retrieve the black-list rules
   programmed on the access network.

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 8]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

  1) To retrieve all the black-lists rules programmed by the CPE router.

  GET {scheme}://{host}:{port}/.well-known/{URI suffix}

  2) To retrieve specific black-list rules programmed by the CPE router.

  GET {scheme}://{host}:{port}/.well-known/{URI suffix}
  Accept: application/json
  Content-type: application/json
     "policy-id": number

                    Figure 5: GET to retrieve the rules

5.1.4.  TBD


   1.  A CPE router can optionally convey metadata describing the attack
       type and characteristics of the attack to the access network.  In
       some cases, especially with new forms of attack that don't fit
       existing mitigation mechanisms or exceed network or mitigation
       capacity, the attack can't be slowed or stopped.  The access
       network might be able to signal its inability to stop the attack
       (if it is aware) or might be unaware that the attack continues to
       flow.  In such cases where the attack continues, even after
       filters are requested and installed, the CPE may still need to
       obtain DDoS mitigation from an external service, outside the
       scope of this document.

   2.  The network resource periodically queries the CPE router to check
       the counters mitigating the attack and the query is recursively
       propagated upstream till it reaches the access network that has
       blocked the attack.  If the network resource receives response
       that the counters have not incremented then it can instruct the
       black-list rules to be removed.

5.2.  BGP

   BGP defines a mechanism as described in [RFC5575] that can be used to
   automate inter-domain coordination of traffic filtering, such as what
   is required in order to mitigate DDoS attacks.  However, support for
   BGP in an access network does not guarantee that traffic filtering
   will always be honored.  Since a CPE router will not receive an
   acknowledgment for the filtering request, the CPE router should
   monitor and apply similar rules in its own network in cases where the
   upstream network is unable to enforce the filtering rules.  In

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015               [Page 9]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   addition, enforcement of filtering rules of BGP on Internet routers
   are usually governed by the maximum number of data elements the
   routers can hold as well as the number of events they are able to
   process in a given unit of time.

6.  IANA Considerations


7.  Security Considerations

   If REST is used then HTTPS must be used for data integrity and replay
   protection.  TLS based on client certificate or HTTP authentication
   must be used to authenticate the network resource signaling the
   black-list rules.

   Special care should be taken in order to ensure that the activation
   of the proposed mechanism won't have an impact on the stability of
   the network (including connectivity and services delivered over that

   Involved functional elements in the cooperation system must establish
   exchange instructions and notification over a secure and
   authenticated channel.  Adequate filters can be enforced to avoid
   that nodes outside a trusted domain can inject request such as
   deleting filtering rules.  Nevertheless, attacks can be initiated
   from within the trusted domain if an entity has been corrupted.
   Adequate means to monitor trusted nodes should also be enabled.

8.  Acknowledgements

   Thanks to C.  Jacquenet for the discussion and comments.

9.  References

9.1.  Normative References

   [RFC2119]  Bradner, S., "Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate
              Requirement Levels", BCP 14, RFC 2119, March 1997.

9.2.  Informative References

   [REPORT]   "Worldwide Infrastructure Security Report", 2014,

   [RFC4732]  Handley, M., Rescorla, E., and IAB, "Internet Denial-of-
              Service Considerations", RFC 4732, December 2006.

Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015              [Page 10]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   [RFC5575]  Marques, P., Sheth, N., Raszuk, R., Greene, B., Mauch, J.,
              and D. McPherson, "Dissemination of Flow Specification
              Rules", RFC 5575, August 2009.

   [RFC6269]  Ford, M., Boucadair, M., Durand, A., Levis, P., and P.
              Roberts, "Issues with IP Address Sharing", RFC 6269, June

   [RFC7159]  Bray, T., "The JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) Data
              Interchange Format", RFC 7159, March 2014.

Authors' Addresses

   Tirumaleswar Reddy
   Cisco Systems, Inc.
   Cessna Business Park, Varthur Hobli
   Sarjapur Marathalli Outer Ring Road
   Bangalore, Karnataka  560103


   Dan Wing
   Cisco Systems, Inc.
   170 West Tasman Drive
   San Jose, California  95134


   Prashanth Patil
   Cisco Systems, Inc.


   Mike Geller
   Cisco Systems, Inc.
   Florida  33309


Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015              [Page 11]

Internet-Draft        Co-operative DDoS Mitigation             June 2015

   Mohamed Boucadair
   France Telecom
   Rennes  35000


Reddy, et al.           Expires December 31, 2015              [Page 12]