School of Computer and Security Science / Security Research Institute
Cloud computing is a paradigm that provides scalable IT resources as a service over the Internet. Vulnerabilities in the cloud infrastructure have been readily exploited by the adversary class. Therefore, providing the desired level of assurance to all stakeholders through safeguarding data (sensitive or otherwise) which is stored in the cloud, is of utmost importance. In addition, protecting the cloud from adversarial attacks of diverse types and intents, cannot be understated. Economic Denial of Sustainability (EDoS) attack is considered as one of the concerns that has stalled many organizations from migrating their operations and/or data to the cloud. This is because an EDoS attack targets the financial component of the service provider. In this work, we propose a novel and reactive approach based on a rate limit technique, with low overhead, to detect and mitigate EDoS attacks against cloud-based services. Through this reactive scheme, a limited access permission for cloud services is granted to each user. Experiments were conducted in a laboratory cloud setup, to evaluate the performance of the proposed mitigation technique. Results obtained show that the proposed approach is able to detect and prevent such an attack with low cost and overhead. © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.