Browse Prior Art Database

Restricted use of IMP DDT (RFC0521)

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000003643D
Original Publication Date: 1973-May-30
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2000-Sep-13
Document File: 2 page(s) / 3K

Publishing Venue

Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)

Related People

A.M. McKenzie: AUTHOR

Abstract

At the recent workshop on "Automated Resource Sharing on the ARPANET", considerable interest was expressed on the topic of network security. In particular, representatives of several sites felt that uncontrolled use of IMP DDT made access control mechanisms quite vulnerable to interception or tampering.* Individuals at the workshop seemed to be in general agreement that use of DDT should be much more controlled than at present. In addition, as the network continues to take on a more and more operational character, and NCC use of DDT (which must be coordinated with other DDT usage) increases** we begin to see other reasons for controlling access to the DDT mechanism.

This text was extracted from a ASCII Text document.
This is the abbreviated version, containing approximately 86% of the total text.

Network Working Group A. McKenzie

RFC #521 BBN-NET

NIC #16855 30 May 1973

Restricted Use of IMP DDT

At the recent workshop on "Automated Resource Sharing on the

ARPANET", considerable interest was expressed on the topic of network

security. In particular, representatives of several sites felt that

uncontrolled use of IMP DDT made access control mechanisms quite

vulnerable to interception or tampering.* Individuals at the workshop

seemed to be in general agreement that use of DDT should be much more

controlled than at present. In addition, as the network continues to

take on a more and more operational character, and NCC use of DDT (which

must be coordinated with other DDT usage) increases** we begin to see

other reasons for controlling access to the DDT mechanism.

Currently, and for the foreseeable future, it is important that the

NCC be able to use DDT at any IMP at any time. It is also sometimes

necessary for site personnel to be able to operate a stand alone DDT

after an IMP crash. Sometimes the NCC needs to ask site personnel to

operate the IMP DDT for the NCC if the network is partitioned. We have

protected all DDT commands that can affect the running IMP program by

requiring that sense switch 4 be turned on at the site, or a software

override flag be enabled. Only the BBN IMP Teletype, the BBN TIP

Teletype, and the PDP-1 can enable override. The NCC monitors these

flags and reports any change in status.

In line with this approach, we will soon modify the IMP system so

that any access to IMP DDT will require the same enabling actions (sense

switch four turned on or override enabled from BBN) now required for

core modification. This will still allow the NCC the same ability to

operate DDT which it now has, and will permit site personnel to operate

DDT at the request of the NCC. As is currently true, the NCC will

----------------

*Examples are easy to construct, but are intentionally omitted from this

document.

**DDT is currently used by the NCC operators for core verification, for

interface debugging, for loading TIP and VDH code, etc. There is

discussion of using DDT in conjunction with an "auto-dialer" to examine

a TIP's "view" of a modem port at the same time that the auto-dialer is

examining the outside world's "view" of the port, of running "automatic"

core verification, of loading Satellite IMP code, etc.

monitor the setting of sense switch four and take appropriate action if

unauthorized use is observed. We feel that this change will be

sufficient to discourage "hackers", although it is obviously

insufficient to protect a node against a determined and malicious

attack.

It should be noted that it is not our current intent to prohibit

occasional use of DDT for communication between sites via "DDT"

messages. Currently, there are two DDT commands, C and L, which set the

single-character message an...