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The major security challenges to cloud computing.
University of Borås, School of Business and IT.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years))Student thesis
Abstract [en]

Cloud computing is the computing model in which the computing resources such as software, hardware and data are delivered as a service through a web browser or light-weight desktop machine over the internet (Wink, 2012). This computing model abolishes the necessity of sustaining the computer resources locally hence cuts-off the cost of valuable resources (Moreno, Montero & Llorente, 2012). A distinctive cloud is affected by different security issues such as Temporary Denial of Service (TDOS) attacks, user identity theft, session hijacking issues and flashing attacks (Danish, 2011). The purpose of this study is to bridge the research gap between the cloud security measures and the existing security threats. An investigation into the existing cloud service models, security standards, currently adopted security measures and their degree of flawless protection has been done. The theoretical study helped in revealing the security issues and their solutions whereas the empirical study facilitated in acknowledging the concerns of users and security analysts in regards to those solution strategies. The empirical methods used in this research were interviews and questionnaires to validate the theoretical findings and to grasp the innovativeness of practitioners dealing with cloud security. With the help of theoretical and empirical research, the two-factor mechanism is proposed that can rule out the possibility of flashing attacks from remote location and can help in making the cloud components safer. The problem of junk traffic can be solved by configuring the routers to block junk data packets and extraneous queries at the cloud outer-border. This security measure is highly beneficial to cloud security because it offers a security mechanism at the outer boundary of a cloud. It was evaluated that a DOS attack can become a huge dilemma if it affects the routers and the effective isolation of router-to-router traffic will certainly diminish the threat of a DOS attack to routers. It is revealed that the data packets that require a session state on the cloud server should be treated separately and with extra security measures because the conventional security measures cannot perform an in-depth analysis of every data packet. This problem can be solved by setting an extra bit in the IP header of those packets that require a state and have a session. Although this change should be done at universal level and would take time; it can provide a protocol-independent way to identify packets which require extra care. It will also assist firewalls to drop bits which are requesting a session sate without a state-bit being set. The cloud security analysts should consider that the interface and authentication layer should not be merged into a single layer because it endangers the authentication system as the interface is already exposed to the world. The use of login-aiding devices along with secret keys can help in protecting the cloud users. Moreover, a new cloud service model “Dedicated cloud” is proposed in this research work to reinforce the cloud security. It was discovered that the optimal blend of HTTPS and SSL protocols can resolve the problem of session hijacks. The client interface area should be protected by HTTPS protocols and the secure cookies should be sent through a SSL link along with regular cookies. Disallowing the multiple sessions and the use of trusted IP address lists will help even further. A reasonable amount of care has been paid to ensure clarity, validity and trustworthiness in the research work to present a verifiable scientific knowledge in a more reader-friendly manner. These security guidelines will enhance the cloud security and make a cloud more responsive to security threats.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
University of Borås/School of Business and IT , 2013.
Series
Masteruppsats ; 2013MASI03
Keywords [en]
Information security, packet filtering, cloud interface, digital signatures, firewalls, ICMP ping attack, data integrity
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-17235Local ID: 2320/12476OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-17235DiVA, id: diva2:1309139
Note
Program: Masterutbildning i InformatikAvailable from: 2019-04-30 Created: 2019-04-30

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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