Cross-Layer and Cyber Physical Moving Target Defense

PI: Qinghua Li, University of Arkansas

With the integration of advanced communication technologies, the power grid is expected to greatly enhance efficiency and reliability of future energy delivery. However, since most devices in electric substations are connected via communication networks, the security of these communication networks becomes a critical issue. Real-World incidents have demonstrated the feasibility of compromising devices in the power grid network to launch further sophisticated attacks.

To deal with security attacks of this spirit, this project aims to hide critical targets from compromised internal nodes and hence protect them from further attacks launched by those compromised nodes. In particular, we consider substation networks and propose to add carefully controlled dummy traffic to a substation network to make critical target nodes indistinguishable from other nodes in network traffic patterns. This project designs and evaluates of such a tool. Evaluations show that the scheme can effectively protect critical nodes with acceptable communication cost.

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