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Thursday, January 9 • 9:00am - 9:30am
Malware's Abuse of Privacy Enhancing Technologies

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Privacy enhancing technologies such as Tor play a critical role in enabling persecuted people to access the open Internet. These tools achieve their goals by obfuscating network-visible artifacts of flows. However, they can be abused by malicious actors to evade detection. We examine malware's abuse of privacy enhancing technologies specifically related to the Transport Security Layer protocol. We first review longitudinal trends in malware’s use of TLS, TLS 1.3, and DNS-over-HTTPS/TLS. We then review more advanced evasion strategies such as the general strategy of randomizing TLS ClientHello parameters to evade TLS fingerprinting and the use of three popular censorship circumvention tools: Tor, Psiphon, and UltraSurf. In many cases, these tools attempt to mimic popular TLS profiles, which has previously been shown to be difficult to achieve in practice. We quantify the ability of malware’s use of these tools to emulate common applications. Furthermore, we provide well-defined detection strategies implemented in our open-source network monitoring tool.

Attendees Will Learn:
Attendees will learn the prevalence of malware using recently approved standards and the visibility losses associated with these standards. They will also learn how malware is using censorship circumvention programs. Finally, we demonstrate how network operators can detect these threats.

Speakers
avatar for Blake Anderson

Blake Anderson

Senior Technical Leader, Cisco
Blake Anderson currently works as a Senior Technical Leader in Cisco’s Cloud and Network Security Group. Since starting at Cisco in early 2015, he has participated in and led projects aimed at encrypted network traffic analysis, which has resulted in open source projects, academic... Read More →



Thursday January 9, 2020 9:00am - 9:30am EST
Regency Ballroom Hyatt Regency Savannah 2 W. Bay Street Savannah GA 31401